posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:04:32 AM

Living and Learning by flohmac

Earth, Antar and all the other planets have been in contact for centuries so there're no real aliens. Zan is sent to Earth by his father - the king of Antar - to learn about the human race and its culture. Jeff Parker and the king are friends and so Zan ends up staying with the Parkers...but you just have to read for yourself. I don't want to give away too much!


**************
Part 01

Zan was pacing in front of the large doors, which led to his father’s apartment. What did he want? He had just been swimming when Telio – his father’s servant - came to him telling him that the king wanted to see him immediately. He hated it to wait, he wasn’t very big on patience. Suddenly the doors opened and Zan was allowed to enter.

“Ah Zan –my son.”

“Your majesty…”

Zan bowed to the tall man who was standing at the window.

“Zan I’ve ordered you here to let you know that you will be sent to Earth tomorrow.”

Zan waited until Telio had left the room.

“What? No way – Dad?! To Earth?”

The king turned around and looked at his son. Sometimes he wasn’t sure if Zan would one day be able to lead his people. Zan was young, smart and very charismatic but he had no patience and he was stubborn as hell and in some ways very stuck-up. And he wanted to change that – Antar and Earth always had had good relations and he hoped that spending some time there – alone, without royal treatment would change him into the person he needed to be to one day take his place, to be the leader of a new generation.

“I will have no discussion with you Zan – you will be sent there tomorrow – alone.”

“But humans are so weak and…and…they are boring…”

“How can you say that? You’ve never been there? Why are you so prejudiced?”

How could he do that to him – Zan was wondering. Why him, why not Vilandra?

“Why?”

“Because I want you to learn a little more respect towards humans and towards your own people. I want you to realize that life isn’t as easy as you think it is. You will go there. My friend Jeff Parker will fetch you at the ‘picking-up’ spot, you will live with his family in a town called Boston and I want to warn you – use your powers only if necessary…if you don’t I will take them from you. Don’t expect any royal treatment if I hear anything negative you will regret it. Did I make myself clear?”

“Yes.”

Zan growled. He was waiting if his father had anything more to add.

“Maybe I will sent Rath when he returns form Dendar – depending on your behavior. Oh and I have told Jeff to take you out to get some Earth looking clothes and maybe you will have to do something about your hair.”

“What is wrong with my hair?”

“It’s too long.”

“Why am I living with this Jeff person?”

“His name is Jeff Parker and for you it will be Mr Parker until he tells you otherwise. He’s very smart and his daughter Liz is your age and she’s a very intelligent girl. I thought it would be okay for you to be around someone your age.”

“A girl?”

Geez, this was getting better and better with every minute. A girl – human females were stronger and smarter than the antarian ones and they sometimes had no respect at all towards males. How was he supposed to live there for…for how long anyway?

“How long am I supposed to stay there?”

“I will call you back when ever I have the feeling that you have changed and don’t try to trick me Zan – I might not be the youngest anymore but you’re my son and if you like it or not I know you.”

”What about Vilandra? Why is she allowed to spend her holidays on Venus and I have to go to Earth?”

“She won’t be the next king and…don’t worry she’ll follow you soon. I just haven’t made up my mind if I will send her to the same city as you or somewhere else. Go pack now and only take what you really need. Telio has all the instructions – he knows what I want you to pack and what to leave here. Now leave.”

*****************
This was a living nightmare. Zan screamed slamming the door behind him.

“What the fuck does he think he’s doing? Earth of all places…damn it.”

Suddenly Telio was standing in the door.

“EVER HEARD THE WORD ‘KNOCK’ SERVANT?”

Telio didn’t respond – he knew the crown prince’s temper and as a consequence he was used to his outbursts – it was nothing new at all for Telio. You could even say that he was immune to it.

“His majesty wants me to observe your packing my prince.”

Zan’s eyes were furious. Was he kidding him?

“How nice then why don’t you pack it?”

Zan threw the bag at Telio’s feet. The servant only looked at the prince with sad eyes but he didn’t move.

“Damn it!!!”

The prince shouted and stormed out of his rooms. He connected to Rath in hope that he wouldn’t be busy.

“What is it bro’?”

“My father is sending me to Earth tomorrow.”

“Geez – what did you do? Must have pissed him off really bad if he is sending you there.”

“Thank you for your sympathy – what am I supposed to do Rath? I mean c’mon Earth – humans. Those inferior creatures – the women there are…”

“Why don’t you look at them as a new challenge – I mean they’re not ugly and…”

The connection grew bad and suddenly he was gone.

“Just great.”

How was he supposed to stay with a human family with a ‘smart’ daughter?

“Well she can’t be that smart after all she’s just human.”

Zan mumbled to himself. So there was still hope.

**************

Part 02

Her father had just told her the news. The words were still ringing in her ear.
The antarian crown prince would be staying with her family – just wonderful. Why with her? She had heard about him – he was stubborn, arrogant and all in all an asshole.

“Maria what am I gonna do?”

Liz complained talking to her best friend on the phone. She was desperate. Both of them had made so many plans for their vacation and now her father nullified them with one sentence.

“Cheer up Babe – I’m sure we can still go to Hawaii.”

“You don’t get it Maria do you? I’m busy with college later – and then there’s Kyle’s wedding and…and…and how can my father do that to me? I mean what did I do to deserve that?”

“When will the prince arrive?”

“I have to leave soon…can you believe that? My father says the king has asked HIM to take care of his son and now it’s ME who has to fetch this asshole. After all I don’t have to treat him any other way.”

This after all was something positive. She was known for her disrespect towards men and orders in general, the only people she took orders from were her colleagues in the biology lab.

“No royal treatment?”

“Nope…Zan is supposed to adjust to our life…something about the fact that he will be king one day and that he shall understand the humans also etc. Whatever…I mean after all he won’t stay forever.”

“I’ve heard that he’s a real heartbreaker.”

“Whatever…if antarian women are so blind to his behavior it just serves them right to end up broken-hearted.”

“As much as I know they don’t have the same education as we do and…have you ever met one of them?”

“Nope…I mean Maria I’m really open for many things but I just can’t understand why someone would like to be treated unfair just because of your gender or what so ever. And if HIS MAJESTY thinks that I will treat him like he is the jackpot in the lottery than I have to prove him how wrong he is.”

“Oh boy – thank god I’m not in his shoes. Well chica, why don’t tell me everything about him when we meet later okay?”

“If I survive this I will…I can’t believe that my mom wants me to take him shopping first. I must have broken a thousand mirrors in my former life.”

Liz could hear Maria chuckle. Of course for her everything was funny. She was into this ‘man-are-created-to-be-adored-thing’ something that Liz couldn’t understand no matter how hard she tried.

“Bye sweety.”

“Bye.”

Liz looked around her apartment. After her father had told her the news her mother had insisted on helping her getting the room for Zan ready. Why was he staying in her guestroom and not in one of her parent’s?

“Because you’re the same age and we thought it would help him getting adjusted.”
One look at her watch told her that it was time to leave for Cambridge.

*****************
Zan was ready for the transport – the royal Granolith was waiting.

“I will miss you my son.”

The queen was holding onto her son. Never had he been on a trip longer than a month but she knew what her husband’s plans were and she knew her son. She was able to put two and two together and that meant that she wouldn’t be seeing her beloved son for a long time. It would take a long time to break his stubbornness and she wasn’t sure if the humans had the power to do so.

“I will miss you too mother.”

Zan let go of his mother, he had never been big on expressing emotions not even towards his mother. Looking at his father he said nothing and just took his bag.

“No good-bye for your father?”

Nothing

“Then to your king.”

That made Zan turn around. He looked straight into his fathers eyes.

“May you my king always be blessed.”

It was the way his father’s entourage said good-bye to their king but not the way a son was supposed to say good-bye to his father. It hurt the king to see the hate in his son’s eyes although he knew that Zan would soon understand – well at least he thought so. Of course the king didn’t respond to this, he nodded towards the man who would start the Granolith after the prince had entered it.

“The Granolith is ready for take off my prince.”

Zan nodded, touched it and was soon taken in. Seconds later he was on his way to Earth.
He soon realised that you totally lost any sense of time while travelling from one planet to the other. He didn’t know a lot about the atmosphere of the Earth only that he could survive there and that was the most important thing.

“Here we go.”

He was standing in a blue room. On one side of the room he could read a welcoming message in antarian. Then a door opened and someone entered the room.

*****************
Liz entered the room taking her fist look at the antarian crown prince and he took her breath away, he was beautiful everything a girl could ask for in a man – well at least when talking about his looks. But she had promised herself that she wouldn’t be impressed by anything concerning the prince – he was an asshole – admittedly a beautiful but that didn’t change a thing. But she would try her best to be friendly.

“Welcome to Earth Zan – my name is Liz Parker. You’ll be staying with me and my family and I’m here to fetch you up.”

Extending her hand she waited what his reaction would be.
Zan didn’t know what to say or do – this angel was beautiful never in his life had he seen anything beautiful as her – maybe Rath had been right. No – no way – she was human – she was inferior to him – not even royal – and she was weak. Looking at her hand he was still wondering what to do.

“You know it would be a courteousness to shake my hand.”

Those big brown eyes were intriguing him.

“We don’t do that on Antar, women don’t touch men out of courteousness.”

Zan replied – who was she to talk to him like that?

“How nice – remind me to never travel to this unfriendly planet. Nevertheless you are now on Earth and you better start behaving like the people here do. Your father gave strict instructions to your stay here, you don’t wanna shake my hand – fine – I can live with that. Follow me we have some stuff to do.”

Realizing that there would be no one to take his stuff he took it and followed her. Women not belonging to any royal family weren’t allowed to walk in front of him – this would be a living nightmare. He knew it.

**************

Part 03

What an idiot – Liz thought to herself. If he indented to keep this behaviour they would get into a fight sooner as expected. But her Mum had been right about going shopping – his clothes were – different – his long hair was okay – but…no he just didn’t look human.

“Where are we going?”

Zan asked when they got into the car. He was very busy with taking in all his surroundings. This was weird. The sky had only one sun which was much more brighter than the two ones on Antar and the sky also looked different. The air wasn’t as clean as he was used to it so he started coughing uncontrollably. Liz was watching him carefully to make sure that he was okay – she really didn’t want to call her father telling him that the crown prince had suffered a heart attack or whatever in the first minutes on Earth. No – she wouldn’t take the blame for that. Realising that he was getting better she answered his question.

“Shopping.”

“What?”

“My parents told me to take you shopping for some human clothes and.…”

She looked him over, stopped at his hair.

“…and a new hair cut would do you good.”

“Who do you think you are talking to?”

Zan finally hissed. His father had told him that this would happen but he had never thought that she would really dare to tell him what to do. Nobody did – only his father and wouldn’t he be the king Zan wasn’t sure if he would listen to those orders anyway.
She stepped on the brakes, making him nearly banging his head against the window. If looks could kill.

“Okay let’s get this straight – YOUR MAJESTY. As it looks like now we both don’t like the idea of you staying here - I mean honestly I had plans for my vacation and I wasn’t thinking about spending it with some crown prince with no behaviour from another planet. I’m not one of your people and for that I will not be taking you screaming at me, bossing me around what so ever. As a matter of fact I expect you to do as I say because you are here to learn. I can make your stay a living hell if you piss me off so better think about it. Message received?”

Zan had managed what nobody really ever did. He had pissed her really off – why was that? Was it because deep down inside she was feeling strange – like…don’t go there Liz.
He was still staring at her – contemplating if he should say something or better be still. Not even his mother had ever dared to talk to him like that.

“So you are right Miss Parker. As a matter of fact I hate being here, I never wanted to come but as it looks like I’m stuck with you and your people. Maybe we can cut a deal?”

“Wondering what that could be but let’s hear it.”

She was challenging him. Was that a smile? He licked his lips before answering.

“I want to go back to Antar as soon as possible so if I promise to behave for let’s say two weeks you have to promise that you’ll convince my father that I don't need all of this and I can go home. After that you will never see me again – deal?”

Liz thought about it – two weeks – that still left two weeks of her vacation. Although she knew that this would never work out. Was he really so ignorant to the fact that his father had sent him here to learn something? Something that took more time than two weeks? But after all it meant two not too stressful weeks, she could worry later what would happen after that.

”Deal.”

She nodded her head and finally they shook hands. When they touched both of them felt some kind of electricity going through their bodies so they pulled away immediately.

*****************
Weak humans they are so easy to manipulate.
Zan took in the world outside the car. Everywhere you could see people walking and talking. On Antar people kept more to themselves. Liz turned on the radio. He was surprised by that.

“What is that?”

“What? That?”

“That?”

He touched the radio.

“A radio – have you never seen a radio?”

“Would I be asking if I did. What’s its purpose?”

“To listen to music and news if necessary. What do you use to listen to music or the news?”

“We only listen to music while celebrations like a bonding ceremony and news we receive through small communicators.”

“Don’t you ever listen to music just for fun?”

“What’s the purpose of it?”

“To enjoy the music? To let go a bit? I for an example need music sometimes to feel better.”

“What a waste of time.”

Was everything Zan said. Liz couldn’t believe how a man of his age was as ignorant as him.
They grew silent until they got to the shopping mall.

“Okay – so first of all let’s get you some new clothes.”

“What’s wrong with these?”

“Nobody really wears that stuff Zan – it’s so not in fashion.”

He followed her into one of the shops. Great he had never ever seen something like that. So many different clothes. Well not clothes better strange looking sacks. Slowly he moved his hand to touch on of the mannequins as he had never seen something like that in his life. The scene in front of Liz reminded her of a five year old experiencing the world for the first time.
A woman was suddenly standing right next to him.

“Can I help you?”

“Yes please, my friend here needs some new clothes.”

Liz replied while pulling Zan behind her straight to the changing rooms.

"Certainly – do you have something in mind?”

“No just show us the newest stuff thank you.”

*****************
Now he was standing in this strange room – well everything was strange for him on this planet. The shirt he was supposed to wear had some funny looking dots on the front and he wasn’t really sure about their purpose so he left the shirt open.

“I really don’t want to wear this.”

Zan complained after coming out of the changing room for the first time wearing black trousers combined with a white button down shirt.

“But it really suits you.”

Liz was fascinated by his body – with her 23 years she had seen many beautiful men but none had been built like him. Slowly approaching him she was wondering if he left the shirt open on purpose or if he just didn’t know how to close the buttons?

“I don’t like it and I won’t wear it. End of discussion.”

And with that he disappeared again. Liz and the saleswoman exchanged some knowing glances.

“Bad mood?”

She asked.

“No bad behaviour.”

Liz stated rolling her eyes.

“We’ll take these and those shirts, the socks, boxers and I guess that’s it for now thanks.”

When Zan returned Liz had paid for some clothes and was handing him the bag.

“What’s that?”

“Your clothes – if you really think that you can impress me with your pure presence then you’re wrong Zan – we cut a deal so stick to it. Next stop hairdresser.”

**************




Life is a freak show and we're the stars

Edited by - flohmac on 09/11/2001 06:05:50
posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:07:44 AM
Part 04

Okay so this wasn’t as easy as he thought it would be. This Liz-person wasn’t easy to impress.
Now he was sitting in this strange room – this whole hairdresser thing was really a new experience. Usually he would use his power to get a new ‘hair cut’. Did humans have any powers by the way? He should have paid more attention when his father had talked about this race.

“Okay so first we will wash your hair…”

A woman again. What was it with those women working everywhere and touching him without asking him?

“…and then we cut it nice and short…”

While Zan was watching every movement the hairdresser did, looking slightly uncomfortable when she started cutting his hair, Liz was reading in a magazine. But from time to time she would look up and straight at him. One time they would look into each others eyes through the mirror but both of them turned away immediately.

After one hour he was ready. Looking into the mirror he was surprised how much the short hair suited him. It wasn’t tradition to wear your hair so short if you were a member of the royal family so he never really had thought about getting his hair like that. Maybe he could talk to his father about that.

“So what do you think?”

“Not bad – takes some time getting used to but…not bad.”

Even Liz had to admit that Zan really looked nice.

*****************
They were walking in silence. Nether Zan nor Liz knew what to talk about. They hated each other – at least both of them thought they did.

“I think I better get you home now.”

Liz mumbled when they were sitting in her car again. Zan was lost in his own world again – hardly being aware of her. When she started singing along to the music playing in the radio it took awhile for him to notice that it was her. A small smile was dancing around his lips while he was listening to her. He shook his head. Those humans were unbelievable – a lot more uninhibited than his people.

*****************
Jeff Parker was really hoping that Liz was fine and Zan wasn’t giving her a hard time. Zans father had contacted him earlier and told him about Zans aversion to come to Earth. He also told him about Liz' reaction to the news - both had to laugh a little bit about their kids behaviour.

“I’m sure they will both learn a lot out of this arrangement. I have my reasons for putting my son into your and your daughters hands Jeff. When you told me about Liz I was sure that she is the right one to teach him – she seems to be a very strong person. You must be very proud of her Jeff.”

“Well I hope that we won’t disappoint you your highness.”

“Oh don’t worry, I have faith in you.”

When he heard the car he opened the door and could see his daughter and Zan getting out of the car. With a feeling of discomfort he approached them, getting his first view of the crown prince.

“Zan welcome to Earth. I’m Jeff Parker.”

“Thank you Mr Parker.”

They all went into the house.

“Liz will you show Zan your apartment and his room after that your mom and me want to have dinner with you two to talk about this arrangement.”

“Dad I don’t have time for dinner – me and Maria want to go out we still have to make some plans for Kyles and Vickys wedding and time is running.”

“Liz I will not argue with you about that…”

“No you don’t get it Dad…I don’t have time…I have a life and I’m grown up and Zan has proven more than one time today that he’s definitely not worth my precious time.”

And with that she went off. Jeff couldn’t believe what he just had heard. This was bad. Zan was standing there looking bored, annoyed and tired. Was it all his daughters fault?

“Well then let me show you to your room first Zan we can talk later.”

The prince didn’t say anything. He would be staying with Liz in her apartment. Those humans had a really freaky way of living – so tiny. Everything was so different from his world.

“Why don’t you make yourself comfortable and join me and my wife in one hour for dinner?”

“Thanks.”

Zan was wondering if he still could connect to Rath – he wasn’t sure if the distance was too big but it was worth a try after all.

*****************
“Hey yo bro’ still alive?”

“Looks like it.”

“So how is it?”

“This is really bad Rath - I mean – I don’t even know how to describe this.”

“How are the women?”

“Don’t go there – I have only really met one and let me tell you if they’re all the same then I’m really wondering why men on this planet put up with this crap. Either they’re mind wrapped or they’re weeds nothing more and nothing less. Can you believe that? She wants to tell me how to behave and what to wear and…and…I have to stay with her in her apartment.”

“Oh how I wish I could see that. But honestly you’re staying in HER apartment?”

“Yes – freaky isn’t it I mean what am I supposed to do – something like that is impossible on Antar.”

“Hm…perhaps you should talk with her father about this arrangement. I know that your father wants you to learn something out of this but if you feel uncomfortable. Explain to him why - perhaps they will change it. But let’s get to the interesting stuff…what does she look like?”

Zan had to smirk – slowly he lay down on his bed.

“Rath – I have to admit I have never seen anything as beautiful as her – she’s mesmerizing. Women on Antar don’t have this kind of charisma – she has brown long hair and big brown eyes. Petit but a figure to die for…”

“Zan…Zan.…I have never in my life heard you talking like that about a female.”

Rath laughed, he heard a knock on the door and a female servant entered his room.

“Zan buddy as much as I want to hear more about this human I have to go…pleasure is waiting.”

Zan could hear Raths dirty laughter. He had a clear picture in his mind of what his best friend was about to do.

“Yeah yeah…do what I so desperately want to do. How am I gonna survive on this planet?”

“Haha…don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.”

Was the last thing he heard then they were disconnected.
He got up and took a look around his room. It was small and dark – apartments on the royal grounds were a lot lighter. Waving his hand he turned on the light.

“So let’s see, what do we have here?”

There were three doors in the room, one led to the rest of the apartment that he knew. He had watched Mr Parker how to open those doors they weren’t sliding like they did on Antar you actually had to pull and push. Carefully he tried to open one of the other two doors.

**************

Part 05

He was oblivious to everything and so he hadn’t heard Liz coming up behind him. She was watching him how he was moving around. It was the first time that she realised that after all he was a royalty and that he was far away from home for only god knew how long and he had never been to Earth so everything was new for him. Feeling a little bit of sympathy for him she decided to help him.

“That’s your wardrobe.”

Liz finally walked up to him opening the door. Zan was startled by her presence and without thinking held his hand in front of his body. This was a natural defence reaction and so he nearly realized too late that Liz wasn’t used to it.

“Wow what is it with you?”

Liz jumped back seeing the fear in his eyes.

“Don’t you ever startle me like that I could have killed you.”

Zan stated taking his hand down again. Liz was still shocked by his reaction, she had never seen someone using his or her powers.
They were now staring at each other.

“Was there something you wanted?”

He asked looking up and down her body.

“Uhm…yes I wanted to give you the key to the apartment.”

He took it and examined it closely.

“What’s it for?”

“To lock the doors – what do you do to lock your doors?”

“We use our powers.”

“Oh – well here on Earth we use those keys to lock a door – every door has its own key so you can only open the front door with it.”

She wanted to leave him again but he seemed so lost. He was standing in the middle of the room still holding the key in his hands deep in thought.

“Zan?”

“Yes?”

It was the first time that they really looked into each others eyes. His eyes were mysterious and she started to wonder if there was a reason for his behaviour. He seemed like a smart guy so why would he be so prejudiced?

“Do you – would you want to join me and my friends tonight? I know that this is all new to you and I think we had a really bad start. Let me make it up to you and introduce you to some people who can help you adjust to this planet. You don’t have to talk if you don’t want to I just don’t…”

She grew quiet – Zan was surprised by her sudden change of behavior but she was right. Perhaps it wouldn’t be too bad and he really needed to get out and if he didn’t like it he would haven even one more reason to hate this planet.

“Sounds – sounds good.”

“Okay then get ready and after that we can leave.”

He walked into the bathroom and changed his clothes maybe she had been right about buying him new clothes. After all he was here to learn about this culture and for that he had to blend in.
Of course Zan would have never admitted to anyone that he wanted to learn about all the different cultures that existed but he wanted to do it on his own terms and not by the order of his father. He was well aware of the fact that he would be king one day although his parents were thinking otherwise. They seemed to doubt his ability to rule and he had made it his task to prove them wrong. He could lead his people and if staying on Earth for some time and dealing with humans was the only way to convince the king and the queen then this was what he had to do.

After ten minutes Zan joined Liz in the living room of the small apartment.

“Ready?”

“Ready.”

He nodded.
While Zan had changed Liz had called her parents to let them know that she would take Zan with her and that there was enough time to talk about everything in the morning.
Of course Jeff Parker was enthusiastic about that. Although Liz and Zan must have had a bad start she was still willing to give them another chance. This was one reason why he loved her so much. She had once told him:
“You know Dad I’m living by the maxim: Winners never quit and Quitters never win.” And Liz was a winner in every way. She was smart, beautiful and had an open heart so it really had shocked him earlier to hear her complaining about Zan. His daughter hardly complained about anything - no wonder that he had started wondering what the crown prince must have had said or done to her to trigger such a behavior.

*****************

“I have thought about something Liz.”

“What is that Zan?”

Liz was concentrating on the traffic. In her mind she was already worrying where to get a parking space so she only listened to him with one ear.

“I’m supposed to learn something out of this arrangement right? So why don’t we just keep it to ourselves that I’m the crown prince of Antar. I mean obviously I have changed the way I look and I’m sure your people don’t know that much about me.”

”So you want to blend in?”

“Right – but. Do your people know my name?”

”Yes they do – so you want to have a new name?”

She glanced at him smiling.

“Yeah.”

He smiled back at her and it made her heart jump. His smile was warm and honest. But was this true or just a charade to trick her into believing in him? Ah what the hell let’s give it a try she could go back to pissing him off any time so why not have a nice evening? Biting her Lip unintentionally she nodded and smiled back.

“So have you already thought about a new name?”

“No I don’t know what kind of names you have on Earth so perhaps you can help me out here. Your names are so different from ours.”

“Okay . How about Kevin?”

“No.”

”Alexander?”

“Nah.”

They kept on going like that until Liz had parked the car.

“Okay last try –how about Max?”

He faced her – thinking about this suggestion.

“Yeah I like that – what about that name?!”

”It was my dog’s name.”

Shrugging her shoulders she got out of the car.
Zan smiled. Max – he liked that name.

“How about a surname? Don’t you all have a surname?”

“Okay So from now on you’re Max Evans – Evans because it was the surname of my favorite biology teacher. And you’re the son of my parents friends – no lie here and you’re here indefinitely because you wanted to get out of home.”

“Where is home?”

“I dunno – how about uhm – Roswell, New Mexico?”

“And why is that?”

“I have just read about it in some magazine – whatever – none of my friends has ever been there – so they won’t ask you any stupid questions.”

******************

Part 06

He followed her into a café. It was tiny and strange – as everything he had seen on this planet so far.

Maria was surprised to see Liz entering the café followed by a handsome looking man.

“Who’s that?”

Alex asked her. How was she supposed to know she had never seen this guy. Perhaps it was Zan – no. Liz would never bring him here – or would she?

“Hi guys – Maria, Alex? This is Max Evans – he’s staying with me and my family. Max these are my friends Alex Whitman and Maria DeLuca.”

“Welcome to Boston man.”

Alex extended his hand. Zan looked at it, then took it and shook it.
Well at least some development here – Liz thought to herself. Or was it because Alex was a man? She should really stop worrying about everything that Zan did.

“Uhm hi, thank you.”

“I’m delighted to meet you Max.”

Maria smiled at him and she gave her best friend a knowing look. After Zan and Liz had taken their seats Maria whispered with a questioning look.

“Max?”

“He doesn’t want to be recognized Maria so please don’t say anything to Alex okay?”

”Okay but you have to tell me everything you know about this hunk. How was the day?”

“Don’t ask.”

*****************
Liz was watching Zan carefully – always aware of the fact that he might turn into the royal asshole again that she got to know some hours earlier. She couldn’t really believe in the sudden change of this man. She knew men and she was sure that this one wasn’t any different from them.

But not only Liz was suspicious Alex also received strange vibes – if you wanted to put it that way.

“So what are you doing here Max? I didn’t get where you’re from.”

“That’s because neither Liz nor I have told you.”

Alex was taken aback by this harsh answer and started wondering what was wrong with this guy and why was he staying with the Parkers. He had never heard about him and he had known Liz for 10 years now. She would have told him and Maria if somebody was moving in with her. Something wasn’t right with this guy and he would find out the truth.

“What do you wanna drink?”

A waitress suddenly appeared on his side and was looking at him. He turned his gaze to Liz, not knowing what to do.

“Uhm I’ll have a coffee what about you Max? Something to drink?”

“Well what do they have?”

“I can recommend the coffee a’la Italia.”

Maria smiled at Zan. To her he looked like a lost puppy that she had to take care of and make him comfortable. Besides that she had never met a real crown prince in her life and to Maria there was something definitely royal about him.

“Uhm…okay then I’ll try that one.”

*****************
“So girls is everything ready for the wedding or do we still have something to buy?”

“Wedding?”

Zan asked taking a sip of his coffee, liking the fact that the beverage was hot although it was lacking of some taste but not mentioning it. He would find some way to spice it up on some other occasion. For now he was happy that he had found something he actually liked.

“Yes our friends Kyle and Vicky will be getting married in two weeks. Will you still be here then Max?”

Maria wanted desperately to make a conversation with him. Neither her nor Alex were missing the glances Liz and Zan were exchanging.

“He doesn’t know yet – why? You wanna invite him without asking Kyle or Vicky?”

“I’m sure they wouldn’t mind Liz, c’mon this could be fun for him too. I will just call Kyle tomorrow and ask him.”

“Can you believe that? Kyle and Vicky are finally tying the knot.”

Alex started chuckling and was soon joined by Liz and Maria. The communication between the three friends was easy and Zan felt a slight feeling of envy. He couldn’t remember that he had ever laughed as much as they did.

“You’re not very talkative are you?”

Alex again after watching this Max-guy for some time. Liz and Maria were again discussing how much Kyle and Vicky loved each other and that they were still hoping for their ‘hero’ to come along.
He recognized the confused look on Max’ face.

“Women! Have you ever met one who wasn’t dreaming about the knight-in-shining-armour? I mean do they honestly believe that those dream guys really exist – perhaps on another planet but not on Earth. What about you? Have a girlfriend?”

“No.”

Zan wasn’t sure what Alex was exactly talking about but he could after all give it a try.

“You?”

“Me? No way man – I’m single and I’m happy.”

“You’re just saying that because you haven’t found the right girl Alex. If she would come along you would fall head over heels in love with her – we know you. So stop pretending as if you liked being single.”

“No I am - I am – tell them Max – you don’t need to live in a relationship to have fun or do you?”

Now Liz and Maria were watching Zan. What would he say? Maria didn’t know that much about Antar but Liz had already heard enough to dislike this planet.

“Well – I – I think you’re right Alex I mean males know how to have fun – don’t they?”

He wasn’t so sure if it made any sense what he had just said but seeing Alex nodding his head assured him that he had said something right.

*****************
Alex wasn’t as suspicious anymore as he had been one hour ago – he was even happy that he wasn’t the only man anymore. He loved Maria and Liz but they could be really annoying with their girlish giggles all the time and their talks about some actors butt or whatever.
Max was still strange but after all he could talk to him about some other stuff – male stuff.

“So – sorry that I ask again but why are you here again Max?”

“I’m here to learn.”

“Learn? Huh? What…I mean?”

“Don’t give him such a hard time Alex.”

Liz interrupted him.

“Hey I was just talking to Max. Beside I’m pretty sure that he can tell me on his own if he wants me to stop asking questions or not – right Max?”

Zan slowly nodded his head. This guy was really weird, nevertheless he had to admit that he enjoyed the company. He wouldn’t open up completely because this wasn’t in his nature but after all he had a good time. And he also was afraid that he would give away too much of his real origin.
When he suddenly heard Liz laughing out loud he just knew that he would be having a hard time hating humans and especially this particular one.

*****************

Part 07

On their way home she finally found the courage to ask him how he liked the evening. It had gotten much harder to dislike him during the last hours.

“It was some kind of experience.”

He muttered.

“What is a wedding?”

This question was bothering him since Maria had started talking about it. Maria was a funny girl a little bit to lively and talkative but sweet – Rath would like her, he thought.

“I mean you and your friend Maria have been talking about it the whole evening so it must be something really important.”

Zan continued after not getting an answer.

“That’s right – it’s important. Our friends are getting married. They’ll become wife and husband.”

“Ah – I see – like we have our bonding ceremony.”

“I guess so.”

“So - when were they promised to each other?”

“Promised?”

It was now Liz’ turn to sound astonished.

“Yes I mean – how do you humans get together? On Antar there is a point in your life when you’ll get promised to someone. It’s…uhm…how do you call it…it’s destiny.”

“You mean you don’t have a choice? No falling in love what so ever?”

“Love? Geez you people really live according to your emotions and feelings. What about the genes? How do you know that you really fit?”

“Excuse me?! Genes? Do you really wanna tell me that before you’re promised or bonded that you get checked up if your genes will fit together?”

This really sounded like in a science fiction movie but not like real life. Liz couldn’t believe what she was hearing. He was kidding her – wasn’t he? But when she saw him shrugging his shoulders, saying “Sure” she knew that he wasn’t.
Lifting her eyebrows in pure astonishment Liz was shaking her head. This was unbelievable.

“Okay so...ehm to avoid any arguments I think it would be the best that I just tell you how we do this on Earth and after that you tell me about Antar okay? We won’t judge the other one for it and we won’t argue okay?”

Liz knew that this was a very delicate subject so she wanted to at least approach this right.

“Okay…her on Earth especially in the western hemisphere people don’t get promised. You can chose on your own whom you want to get to know better, if you’re lucky you’ll have a crush on someone and eventually fall in love, marry and live happily ever after. People marry because they want to, they love each other. Some will have children, some won’t . So the only promise that really is made is during the wedding ceremony – you’re promising your partner to love each other forever, to be there through thick and thin so to say…so this is how we handle this. How is it on Antar?”

Of course she knew that she wouldn’t like what she was going to hear so she braced herself for the worst.

*****************

Zan was sure that he had never heard something more pathetic in his life, yet he had to admit that Liz had really tried to describe it to him trying not to be insulting. The least he could do was doing the same.

“Well, on Antar people don’t fall in love, we’re promised as soon as the perfect match is found. After that you get bonded. The only purpose is to ‘consummate the bonding’ - I think you call it ‘making love’ to reproduce an heir.”

Silence was again dominating the drive. Both had a lot to think about. Two different worlds were colliding here and nobody really knew how hard it was for those two to accept the other one.

“Hearing you talking like that makes me think that everything has to have a purpose on Antar – even the sexual act has only one aim…”

“Well not exactly I mean…sometimes I…”

Zan was stuttering. Should he really admit that sometimes he would also call one of those special female servants.

“Okay…stop it right there…so after all you and human males have something in common. When it comes to sex you’re all the same – how reassuring. May I ask you something Zan – I mean Max – no Zan – anyway.”

“Yes.”

Zan was chuckling because listening to Liz mixing up the names was really funny.

“Have you ever felt something like love or attraction towards someone?”

“Not that I remember. Have you? I mean what is love? How does it feel?”

“It is just the most wonderful feeling in the world. You are excited about seeing each other and you feel like you’re having butterflies in your stomach. You can’t eat, can’t sleep, can’t breath without the other. You want to do everything together and you just can’t have enough of touching your partner, breathing in his scent, feeling his skin touching yours, listening to his voice telling you sweet things. But love means also that you’re sad when your partner is not around, that you’re down if you had a fight etc. You really have to experience it to really understand its meaning.”

“Have you ever been in love Liz?”

“No – I – I still believe in true love that only comes once in a lifetime and I haven’t found it yet.”

“So you prefer risking to stay alone for the rest of your life although being loved is one of the most important things in your life according to your just given explanation?”

“I guess so.”

Liz had to admit sadly. Was he right? Was the antarian way of life concerning this matter better? No – they didn’t love each other, they did what they did because it was their destiny.

**************

Part 08

Vilandra got out of the Granolith. The trip to Venus had been nice but she couldn’t wait to meet her brother again. They hadn’t been in contact for some time now because when she left they had had an argument and so she had left in anger. The servants were taking her bags and Kathana her servant was following her where ever she went.

“Welcome back Vil.”

Turning around Vilandra saw Rath standing at the door. He then walked up to her, kissed her on the hand and waited for her to say something.

“Rath, hey – nice to see you again.”

“Same on my side. How was your trip?”

“Nice, really nice I enjoyed it. People on Venus are so carefree. You really have to go there one day.”

“I’ll keep that in mind.”

They were now walking towards Zan’s rooms and Rath was wondering if Vilandra knew that her brother had been sent to Earth yesterday. The king had talked to him about it. He was going to send him and Vilandra to Earth too, he just wanted Zan to spent some time there alone.

“Where are you going Vil?”

“I want to meet Zan, we got in a real bad argument before I left and we never had the chance to come to terms with each other.”

“You don’t know do you?”

“Know what? What happened?”

Vilandra didn’t know what her brothers best friend was talking about. Had something happened to Zan that she didn’t know about? Was that the reason that he hadn’t contacted her?

“Rath? Please you’re worrying me. What is it? Is Zan okay?”

“Yes he is, don’t worry Vil. He’s just not here anymore and he won’t be for a long time. He’s on Earth.”

“On Earth? Why? When?”

“Your father sent him there. He’s supposed to get to know the human race and learn a little bit more patience etc..”

Vilandra couldn’t believe what he had just told her.

“I have to talk to my mother.”

Was all she said before she took off in search for the queen. Rath was watching her leaving.

*****************

The queen was just returning from a meeting with her husband when she saw her daughter running down the corridor.

“Vilandra – you’re back. How are you doing? I’ve missed you! And please stop running, women don’t do that.”

Vilandra hugged her mother.

“I’ve missed you too and I’m sorry about running but…. Rath just told me about Zan. Mother what happened? Why did Dad sent him to Earth?”

“You know that you shouldn’t question your fathers decisions Vilandra.”

“I know but I just want to understand. He has never talked about sending Zan anywhere.”

“Your brother has to become a leader Vilandra and your father wants him to become a great one - he’s the hope for a new generation who will be able to change his people. And that’s why your father has sent him to Earth. Your father is too old to change anything.”

“But what is he supposed to learn from this race? They are inferior to us.”

“How can you say that Vilandra? Haven’t we taught you to be open and not be biased? This race, although they might not have powers like we do has a lot to offer. And your father wants Zan to realize that. Zan is more powerful than your father ever could have been but nevertheless Zan has still to learn a lot about life itself.”

“So what about me? Do I have to fear to be sent there too?”

“Vilandra – honey, you don’t have to fear to be sent there…your brother will be there and your father will send Rath there too very soon – he just wants Zan to adjust on Earth before you or anybody else from this planet will be sent there.”

“How do you stay in contact with him?”

“I don’t, your father gave his strict order that Zan isn’t allowed to use his abilities. But we’re in contact with the man Zan is staying with.”

Vilandra found that all very confusing and she didn’t like the idea that she would be sent there eventually. Honestly she was afraid of those human women.

*****************

When she was finally lying in her bed she thought about contacting Zan through dream walking. She had to know if he was fine but she never had dream walked anybody that far away so she wasn’t sure if it would work.
Breathing in and out she was concentrating on her brother then suddenly she was in.
Where was she? Everything was green and blue and…this was another planet, maybe this was Earth? Turning around she saw Zan walking towards her.

“Vil? What are you doing here? You know that you’re not allowed to contact me?”

“I know I just wanted to make sure that you’re fine and I wanted to tell you that I’m sorry and that you have been right all along.”

“What? Right about what?”

“You know our argument? Before I left?”

Zan started smiling extending his arms to hug his sister dearly.

“I think you better leave now before Dad knows about you dream walking me.”

And with that he interrupted the connection and was gone.

Well at least he seemed to be okay. Only time would tell if he would really turn into this great leader his parents wanted him to be.

**************

Part 09

Liz was staring at her ceiling, she couldn’t forget his words.
“So you prefer risking to stay alone for the rest of your life although being loved is one of the most important things in your life according to your just given explanation?”
Meeting Zan had made her realize how different their worlds really were. Of course she had heard stories about life on the other planets but she had never really thought about it thoroughly. Zans – no Max’ life was so strange – no emotions – no real communication, women were treated like things.
But why would the king send his son – the crown prince – his heir to the throne – to a planet so different from Antar? Maybe she should have really listened better to her father – she would ask him again tomorrow.

When she woke up the other morning she had to get out of her apartment, she needed fresh air – jogging was the best thing to do.

*****************

Hearing some noise outside of his door he got dressed and walked up to the door slowly opening it.

“Good morning Max.”

Liz was smiling at him.
Gaping at her he couldn’t believe what he was seeing. Liz was wearing a pair of white shorts, a red tank-top and a cap, running shoes. She was showing way too much skin in his opinion. Although he had to admit that she had a nice skin which shimmered soft and tanned and…and inviting…like it wanted - no needed to be touched.

“Uh – where are you going?”

“Jogging.”

“Jogging? What is that – oh wait that is sport right?”

“Yes do you wanna join me?”

“Ah no – go ahead I – I just uhm will get ready for the day and…and…”

The look of her was really distracting for him and he had a hard time concentrating on anything he was saying. Liz just shrugged her shoulders and left. Breathing in and out Zan tried to distract himself.

“Okay you can do this Zan – now…”

Suddenly something was ringing and it wasn’t stopping until he could hear Liz.

“Hi I’m not in right now but if you leave your name and number I might get back to you. We’ll see how lucky you’ll be.”

Turning around he was searching for her. What the hell was that?

“Liz? Liz?!”

Nothing.

Then suddenly he could hear Maria.

“Hey Liz chica it’s me I was just wondering if you and Max would want to join me, Alex, Kyle and Vicky going to the beach later…Would be great. Oh and Jordan is coming also so…Call me and where the hell are you? Anyway! Talk to you later. Bye!”

Now this was really confusing.
He was hungry but where could you find something to eat? And besides that he didn’t even now how to cook…they had their servants for stuff like that.

Deciding that he would be on the safer side to wait for Liz’ return he went back into his room. His bags were still standing there packed – of course – there was nobody to unpack it. As he was alone and his father was galaxies away from him he again used his powers to unpack his stuff. Telio had been very strict with Zans packing so he just had some clothes with him and books. The rest he was supposed to get from the humans.
The first time in his life he felt homesick. This was not his planet and this was definitely not where he wanted to be. The other times he had travelled to other planet Rath or some one else from his planet had been with him. This was really a new experience. He slowly lay down on his bed again – concentrating on his home planet. The pictures started coming. His room, his sister smiling at him, his mother with the always present look of pride in her eyes. Zan knew that he had always been a son to be proud of – hell he was the crown prince – some people on Antar worshipped the ground he was walking on. Everybody was proud of him.

Oblivious to the world again he didn’t hear Liz coming back and shouting that she would take a shower before breakfast.

*****************
Opening his eyes again he could hear something – so Liz had to be back again – good because he was starving.

“Liz?”

Not even thinking and without knocking he opened the door of the room he could hear her in.

Hearing the door opening Liz reached for a towel.

“MAX! I mean ZAN!”

He was just standing there, saying nothing - not even an apology. His eyes were playing tricks on him, there was no other explanation. In front of him there was standing Liz wearing nothing.

“HEY – I wanted to take a shower and could you turn around?”

Liz was shouting at him, her eyes furious.

“I’m hungry.”

„Excuse me?“

Did she just get that right? His Majesty was hungry and that excused his presence in her bathroom.

“Well that’s too bad because I wanted to take a shower in MY bathroom – will you turn around now! Turn around NOW!”

The last part wasn’t a plea anymore it had been an order. They now were both fighting a staring battle.
Zan had no intention of turning around he was very pissed off and that for two reasons. Firstly he was hungry – his last real meal had been on his planet and it was now nearly 24 hours later and secondly he refused to take any orders from a woman – a naked women as a matter of fact!

“I don’t care if you’re hungry or not. OUT OF MY BATHROOM!!!!”

*****************

Jeff had just entered his daughters apartment when he heard her screaming and then a door slamming.

“What’s going on here?”

He was now standing in front of a very angry Zan. Geez his wife had been right to not leave them alone too long. But he had hoped that when Liz had told him that she was taking Zan with him the other night that they would come to some kind of understanding. Well wrong again. Why was it that his wife was always right?

“I’m hungry.”

Was all that Zan told him.

“Excuse me?”

Jeff couldn’t have been prepared for Zans outburst. One second the prince was clam and the next he was shouting.

“What is wrong with you people? I said I’m hungry and your daughter is refusing to help me out here and now you ask me what’s wrong with me and I tell you that I’m hungry and you also question me? How dare you.”

Jeff was flabbergasted. He was looking at the young man standing in front of him with shock written all over his face.

“Zan I’m sure there is a reason that Liz has reacted this way. After all you came out of her bathroom.”

“If I hadn’t have to live with your daughter Mr Parker this wouldn’t have happened. I don’t feel very comfortable here in fact I’m ashamed and I have a hard time believing that my father wanted me to stay so near to a woman. On Antar not even bonded people stay so close on their regular basis. I want you to contact my father and ask him what to do about this problem because if not I can turn into even bigger trouble for your family than I’m now. And don’t get me wrong here Mr Parker I’m not giving you any options here it’s my way no matter what you do cuz I’m the man.” (Had to be guys )

And with that he left Mr Parker standing there even more shocked than before.

**************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:10:26 AM
Part 10

Liz had been able to listen to the conversation between her father and Zan. God she was happy that this had happened before she could have talked to Zan. Jogging had been good for her and she had made the decision to give Zan another chance. He was an alien to Earth after all but now realizing that he wasn’t even trying to change she dismissed her thoughts. What an idiot.

She could hear her father knocking on the door.

“Lizzie may I come in?”

“Yes – one moment Dad.”

She slipped into her bathrobe and opened the door. Jeff was standing there alone, Zan had went into his room again.

“Could you…?”

“I have heard every word Dad. I can’t believe it? How dare he? I mean he’s our guest and …argh…he’s just so annoying and…and…why is he here anyway?”

“I’ve told you Liz. His father wants him to…”

“…get to know us…I know but I just don’t get why. I mean if his race is really that superior to us then why sent him here? To us good-for-nothing. It doesn’t make any sense Dad.”

“I’m not allowed to talk about it Liz – you just have to understand that he will stay here.”

“But you’ve heard what ‘his majesty’ just said – he can even be more trouble do you realize that? I have to live with this trouble for gods sake! Feel a little pity for me Dad! Give me a break – I could be on vacation now but no Mister ‘I-am-the-royal-asshole-and-you-do-what-I-say’ has to come here.”

“Liz, I promise that I will talk to Zan and his father. I guess both of us haven’t realized how uncomfortable he might feel and I think that this is also a reason for his behaviour.”

“I can’t believe that you’re still defending him after all that he just said to you?! Dad! Open your eyes! He’s just a spoilt brat.”

“After all he’s still the crown prince of Antar and although his father gave me strict orders to not treat him like that I just can’t forget the fact. Do you have any idea how much of a burden it is to know that you will be the leader of a whole planet one day? That everybody will be depending on you?”

Jeff was having a hard time getting his daughter to understand the circumstances. It sure wasn’t usual that the crown prince of another planet came to Earth.

“But now he’s on Earth Dad and not on Antar. I would also treat him like a prince if this would be a royal visit but that is not what this is all about. You should know me better than that Dad. And if he would just show a little more respect to me I surly wouldn’t react like I just did…although I was shocked to see him standing in my bathroom while I wanted to take a shower. And besides that he doesn’t give the impression that he’s aware of this great burden as you like to call it. “

Both were now looking at each other. This was really getting them nowhere. Jeff needed to talk to the king first and besides that he could only hope that Liz and Zan would get along after that because if not they really had a problem. The king had mentioned that he would also sent Zan's sister Vilandra and his best friend Rath to Earth very soon.

*****************
Zan was embarrassed and furious. Those people were a major pain in the ass and as long as they didn’t show any respect to him he would be as much trouble as possible. He could hear the conversation in the bathroom and it just proved what he had suspected – Liz and him they would never get along. Never! He decided to go out, get something to eat and think about a possible way out of this situation.
When he left his room he could still hear Liz and her father talking – good - so they wouldn’t necessarily realize at once that he was gone.

He had taken a book and those strange ‘credit cards’ his father had given him. Weird way to pay for food or anything but at least he wouldn’t need that much money. This was also an unusual thing for him as on Antar everything was free for the royal family – but that was one of last problems he had in the moment.

*****************

Alex just got out of his car when this Max guy from the other night walked by him – not really seeing him.

“Max.”

He didn’t turn around, so Alex locked his car and took after him.

“Max, hey…”

It was now that he saw the angry look on Max’ face and that he wasn’t in a very good mood.

“Alex.”

No ‘Hi’ or ‘How are you doing?’. This guy had a real problem with conceitedness.

“Uhm what are you doing here Max?”

“Why are you also questioning me?”

“Excuse me? I’m not questioning you - I was just wondering what you’re doing here at this time of day. God which side of the bed did you get up today?”

“I was just trying to get something to eat. Do you know where I could get something?”

“Sure I was just going to get something for breakfast. C’mon.”

Zan or better Max followed Alex without talking. Alex again was wondering what his problem was.

“Still not very talkative are we?”

“I’m not really in the mood to talk – no offence.”

“Whooo…I’ve figured that out already. So where is Liz?”

“She’s the reason I don’t want to talk.”

“Liz? Really? Why? I mean…okay I can understand that she can really be annoying from time to time but…”

“I really don’t want to talk about it Alex.”

There was something about Max, something in the way he was walking and talking and also the way he as watching everybody around him – something solemn - as stupid as it sounded.
When they finally entered a bakery Alex decided to invite Max for breakfast in hope that this would loosen him up a bit.

“So I don’t know if Maria has already called you guys but will you come to the beach with us today?”

Alex was sitting down again handing Max a cup of coffee and a plain bagel with cream cheese.

“I won’t. What is that?”

“You’ve never eaten a bagel?”

“No…where I come from we don’t have that.”

“Really? I thought you would know that in Roswell…anyway…just try it I’m sure you’ll like it. That’s too bad that you won’t come we always have a lot of fun. By the way Maria is going to ask Vicky and Kyle if you can also come to their wedding. That is only if you ant to of course.”

“It sounds interesting…I have to think about it though.”

Max wasn’t really concentrating on Alex, he just wanted to eat and after that find a quiet place to think about a strategy.
Alex was just telling him about something concerning his work, when Max stood up.

“Well thank you for your invitation for breakfast Alex I have to go now.”

And with that he was gone, leaving Alex sitting there dumbfounded.

*****************

Mr Parker knocked at Zan’s door without getting an answer.

“Zan? Zan may I come in?”

Nothing.

“Zan?”

Slowly opening the door and seeing nobody in there he thought the he was in the bathroom. Where else could he be right?!

“Zan I really need to talk to you about what happened.”

It hit him when he realized that Zan wasn’t in the bathroom either and that he was gone.

“Liz?! Liz!”

“What is it Dad?”

“He’s gone!”

“What do you mean? How can he be gone?”

“I don’t know Zan isn’t here.”

“Damn it!”

While Liz was getting dressed Jeff called his wife to tell her about what had happened and that she should contact him if Zan returned while he and Liz were searching for him.

“Do you have any idea where he could be?”

“No Dad – I have no idea. He doesn’t even know the city so he could be anywhere…I just can’t believe that he took off. How old is he for god’s sake?”

**************

Part 11

Vilandra met Rath in the library where he was scanning some books about Earth.

“What are you doing here Rath?”

“Trying to get to know Earth. You should also do that.”

“Why? I have you - right? You’re doing that so…”

“I see but you don’t know if you’ll be sent there with or without me and you also don’t know if we’ll be sent to the same place.”

“Are you giving me an order Rathard?”

“No I’m just making a suggestion.”

“You better.”

Rath had to smile about her reaction. It was always the same. Every time he was right, Vilandra would be play the princes-card on him. He wasn’t sure when the king would call for him and tell him that he would be sent to Earth soon but he wanted to be ready for it. Maybe he found some useful information for Zan. How was his best friend doing? When he tried contacting him one hour ago he couldn’t get in – Zan was angry – that was for sure. But why?
Still he hoped that he would be sent to Earth soon. One month from now his check up would be held and…although he knew the rules to his planet he really didn’t like the idea of being bonded. He was a soldier and not a mate.
Remembering what he just scanned he was wondering how those humans found each other. The book didn’t really give a clue something about ‘They find each other although there is no real explanation how they do that’. What do humans need? Perhaps he could find out on his own soon.

“Rath are you listening to me?”

“Uhm…sorry I was just…”

“Not listening to me.”

“I was thinking of Zan.”

That was the only explanation Vilandra excused.

“Do you think he is fine? I just have this weird feeling that he is not.”

“Vil, Zan is a big boy and I’m sure he’s fine.”

Well at least he was hoping for it.

*****************

It was starting to get dark when Zan finally decided to go back to the Parkers. He had spent the whole day walking around the city watching and learning. He was a quick learner but there was still a lot that confused him. He knew that he had to face the Parkers and eventually his father. He had blocked everybody out who had tried to contact him so even his father didn’t have any access. Remembering the way back to the house at once he slowly opened the door with his key.

Liz jumped up from her couch when she heard the door open. Hoping it would be her father or mother who had been searching for Zan the whole afternoon she was really surprised to see Zan walking in.

“Where the hell have you been? You know that we were worried about you don’t you?!”

Zan was watching her outburst with no expression at all on his face.
She was going on about how irresponsible his behaviour had been and how stupid and egoistic and blablabla…he just zoomed out waiting for her to shut up.

“Are you finished?”

Hissing at her after she finally stood right in front of him. Before she had the chance to respond to this indirect question it was now his turn to say something.

“I don’t need to tell you where I’ve been or what I’ve done. I don’t need to report to you. And…”

Her intense stare into his eyes gave him a hard time concentrating on what he just wanted to say.

“And…what you said about me and my people is wrong dear Miss Parker. I care about them and I’m aware of the fact that I will one day be responsible for them and I also have no idea at all why I’m here and why with you?! Why not with someone else why you?! What makes you so damn special that I have to stay with you and your family?”

Liz was still staring at him.

“I…I don’t know but…but how could you…I mean…argh…”

She had to get out of this spell he kept her under. Turning her face away from him she started pacing the floor.

“My father wants to talk to you when he’s back.”

This guy got to her, no matter what he said or what he did. He had only been here for one whole day and he already had got to her. Why? Was it because he really didn’t take any orders from her? Not like Alex who nearly always did what she was asking for?

*****************

Mr Parker had been contacted by his daughter to let him know that Zan was back but before talking to him he wanted to know what to do. He didn’t feel very comfortable about the fact that he had to contact the king on the second day of the crown prince’s stay on Earth.
Activating the communicator the king had given him a long time ago he contacted the king.

“Jeff what is it?”

“Well, I guess we have a situation here.”

“A situation?”

“Yes, Zan and Liz had an argument this morning after that your son had disappeared for the whole day. He just came back. I want to know what to do now?”

“That sounds really serious. I had hoped that they would get along better.”

“Believe me so did I. I think Zan has a problem with staying so near to a female, he told me that he felt ashamed about it and that he couldn’t believe that you wanted it like that.”

“I see, any other problems?”

“Well only minor I guess one problem is that they are both pretty stubborn and not taking any orders from each other.”

“That’s really interesting and exactly what my son needs. So tell me is he okay after spending one day all lone on Earth? Although you must have been worried about him I think it was after all a good chance for him to learn.”

“As much as I know he’s fine. Liz wouldn’t tell me everything. So what shall I tell him now?”

“Tell him that you won’t allow him to keep up this behaviour, he might be a grown man but his behaviour is that of a child. And tell him also this there will be no changes in the sleeping arrangements until I say so. If he keeps up with his behaviour contact me again and I’ll think about a way to handle this. Any more questions Jeff?”

“Do you really think this is a good idea? I don’t feel very comfortable about his…Liz is always questioning me and I can’t give her a proper explanation.”

“Jeff it doesn’t get better you will let me know and I will come to Earth and talk to her and my son – I can assure you that. I don’t want you or your family to feel uncomfortable.”

“Okay, what about your daughter and Zan’s friend Rath?”

“I will let you know when they’re ready to join Zan. I’ve to go now.”

“Well thank you anyway.”

*****************

“Hey guys I’m sorry that it took me longer.”

“We know you Maria, where is Liz?”

“She’s busy.”

Maria at down next to Alex and Vicky.

“So tell me what did I miss?”

“Well you missed a wonderful day at the beach and oh guess what I’ve met Max today.”

“Really?”

Maria had just talked to Liz and she had of course told her that Max was missing.

“Where did you meet him and what did he say?”

“Well he was in a very bad mood, he wouldn’t talk that much, just mentioned that Liz was the reason for this.”

“Who is this guy and how come that we have never heard about him?”

Kyle was finally asking his friends. Maria had called him this morning to ask if Liz could bring max to the wedding.

“Beats me Kyle, this guy is really weird. He doesn’t say much, he doesn’t laugh much and he’s definitely a spoilt brat if you ask me.”

“Oh c’mon Alex you enjoyed his company yesterday.”

“Of course I did I wasn’t the only male anymore.”

They all started chuckling. Maria felt a little bad about the fact that she knew who max really was but she wasn’t allowed to say anything. They only possibility she had was to defend Max as much as possible.

“I like him.”

“Maria you like the postman.”

“And? Where’s the problem. I think Max is a really nice guy. He’s new here and he doesn’t even know how long he’ll stay here.”

“Why do I have the feeling that you know more about him than you admit you do DeLuca?”

“I…I…never said that…uhm…”

‘Damn it’ Maria thought.

“Okay, okay I know something but I won’t say anything.”

“That is so unfair DeLuca. Vicky, Kyle c’mon guys help me.”

“Okay Maria, Alex is right. You want us to invite him to our wedding so better tell what you know.”

“I…I…Max is not from here. In fact he’s only a visitor from another planet.”

“Really? So why tell the story that he’s from Roswell? And from which planet is he and what is he doing here?”

“He’s from Antar.”

“No kidding?”

This was now very interesting for Kyle. He was very interested in those particular planets belonging to the V - constellation – galaxy.

“Isn’t that the ruling planet?”

Vicky asked now knowing her fiancés interest in planets and their history.

“Yes it’s I was always hoping to get a visa to go there one day but it’s not easy to get there and besides that it’s very expensive and besides that people their have powers we can only dream about.”

“Powers? You mean this is real? People from Antar can do things we can’t.”

“Maria – have you ever listens when we talked about this stuff in astronomy?”

“I wasn’t very interested in that. So tell me what do you know about Antar?”

“Well it’s ruled by a king – he has the power over Antar but also has the last word about every major decision the other flour planets make. As much as I know, the crown prince’s name is Zan. I don’t know much about him though – there’s not much talk about him. People on Antar and also on the other four planets have powers like telepathy, moving things without touching it etc. . Some can also kill with their powers and some can heal…I’m sure that there’s a lot more they can do but that is what is mentioned in every book about this culture. So what is he doing here – this Max guy? Is that really his name? Max? They usually have other names there.”

Maria was realizing that they might have a big problem if Kyle really knew so much about Zan’s planet. He could recognize him and god only knew how Kyle would react if confronted with the crown prince of Antar.

“I don’t know his real name – Liz just told me that his name was Max and that’s it. Maybe he has another name but I don’t know. He’s supposed to get to know the human culture. Nothing more and nothing less to it. Can we change the topic please?”

**************

Part 12

Jeff took a deep breath before he entered his daughters apartment. It was quiet but the lights were on.

“Liz? Zan? I need to talk to you.”

Two doors were opening and his daughter and the prince entered the living room.

“Sit down please.”

Both looked at each other then they sat down on the two couches as far apart from each other as possible.

“I have talked to your father Zan and he said that there will be no changes at all concerning the sleeping arrangement. You will stay here with Liz…”

He could see that Liz wanted to protest but stopped her before she could really say anything.

“…and I won’t take you complaining about it either young lady. What is it with you two? You’re both grown up people but you are doing your best to behave like children. And Zan let me tell you if you pull something like that from today again I won’t be this calm next time. Either you two behave yourself or we’ll have a lot of trouble. And now when I leave you I want you two to either talk about your problems or find another way to get along. I don’t really care as long as it stays calm between you two.”

“One question Mr Parker.”

“What is it Zan?”

“Why am I here? Why with you?”

“I don’t know exactly why Zan, your father wanted you to come here to learn something about our culture…Liz is an very intelligent girl and I’m sure you could learn a lot from her if you two would just find a way to communicate without arguing.”

“But what exactly is it that I’m supposed to learn?”

Jeff considered his options. He knew that the king wanted Zan to actually open his eyes to other possibilities of living and if he liked it he had the chance to introduce it to Antar. The king was too old for such changes but Zan still had the chance to do so.

“Well…do you know what would happen in three weeks if you would be on Antar Zan?”

“Yes, my genetic check up, but what has this to do with my stay on Earth.”

“That’s now your task to find out, good night and tomorrow I will take you with me. And keep it quiet.”

And with that Mr Parker was gone leaving Zan and Liz sitting on their couches.

*****************
“So what will it be Zan? You’ve heard my father will you come down from your throne and we’ll try to talk or will we just stay in the same apartment and that was it?”

Actually Zan was tired of fighting Liz and he also had a lot of questions that he wanted to be answered.

“You first.”

He got up, stretching his arms, then scratching his head he walked up into the kitchen.

“Do you mind?”

“Huh? No…uhm, go ahead.”

Had she heard that right? had he really asked her if he was allowed to take something out of the fridge?
He came back with a water bottle in his hand and sat down, facing her and waiting for her to begin.

“Okay, so uhm…I actually don’t know what to say to you Zan or Max…what do you prefer?”

“Max – I think.”

“Okay, so um…I mean we both know what we think of each other don’t we?”

“Well I’m not so sure about that.”

And what was that supposed to mean? After all he sounded very serious and not like as if he was annoyed or angry – no it had been an honest statement.

“Why is that?”

“I had time to think about everything today Liz and I figured something out. As hard as it’s for me to be here it must be hard for you also to have me. I mean you usually stay alone in your apartment, just like I do. In fact I have a lot more space on Antar so I have the feeling that the walls are closing in on me here. And as I’ve already told your father even bonded people don’t stay as close on Antar as we do in the moment. I can’t promise that I will get used to that but we’ll see.”

“How come that you realized that?”

“As I told you I had time and besides that I met a funny guy today. He was sitting in the park – looked like he was living there. Why is that Liz? Anyway – we talked and this guy was really clever – he told me everything about his view of the world and everybody’s role in it and I’ve asked him some questions and he kinda opened my eyes. I came here with the impression that you people are weak. I still think you’re don’t get me wrong but I figured out that you have no other choice I guess, just like we have no other choice.”

“Everybody has the choice to lead a life according to his or her dreams Max.”

“I don’t.”

“Why not?”

“Because I’m the prince, it’s a role I’ve been born in and I’ve no choice at all.”

“Well but you can still create your life I mean, your father send you here to open up your eyes to new possibilities – well that’s at least what I think about it. I mean what did my father mean about your check up? What has this to do with you coming to Earth?”

“I’ve no idea.”

“Maybe he wants you to find your mate her on Earth?”

“No way!”

Zan was laughing it was the first time that Liz heard and saw him laughing and it suited him perfectly. She was now also smiling and as his laughter grew silent - they shared another of those moments just staring into each others eyes.

“You know I never thought I would say that but you should really laugh more often, it suits you.”

“Thank you. You look also a lot nicer when your smiling.”

Zan finally admitted. He took another sip from his bottle.

“But you’re right. I really have to find out what your father meant by that little comment. Fact is that my father would never allow me to find a mate here on Earth – besides that how am I supposed to do that? I’m not human – I don’t know what to do. I don’t feel like you do.”

“Well that would be the least problem – I could help you.”

“You could?”

Zan some how liked the idea to at least try to find someone. He definitely wanted to know if it was possible for an Antarian to find a human mate. If they really cared so much about their feelings and everything would there be someone who could cope with him? Definitely a goal to pursue.
Liz also liked the idea to find him a girlfriend. She knew that eventually he would break someone’s heart and leave again but the scientist in her wanted to know if it was possible for him to feel and if not if there was someone out there who would fall for him. ‘Well as long as he keeps his mouth shut I could fall for him’ she thought, realizing what that meant she tried desperately to focus on something else again.

**************

Part 13

“Maria I really need your help here – I’ve gotten myself into something and now I…I…I really need your help.”

“I still don’t understand how you could propose something like that? I mean…that is just not so 'Liz-like'. Tell me again how that came up.”

Liz had called Maria as soon as she had gotten up. Zan and her father were away for the whole day so now she had time to think about a plan to find Zan a girl. What the hell had she been thinking?

“I just said that it wouldn’t be hard for me to find him a girl and then suddenly he came up with the whole idea of a bet. I’ve to find him a girl who falls in love with him until he goes back to Antar.”

“And what are the terms? I mean what happens if you lose?”

“He’ll let me know he’s still thinking about a way – oh god Maria what have I done? How could I be so stupid?”

“Well chica, that is exactly what I wanted to ask you but hey – I mean – I would definitely go out on a date with him.”

“MARIA?!?!”

Liz couldn’t believe what she was hearing. Maria has been her best friend since kindergarten and she wouldn’t allow Zan to break her heart and besides that she really didn't like the idea of Maria and Zan going out on a date.

“After everything I’ve told you about him? You still would go an date? You’ve got to be kidding me!”

“I’m sure he’s a nice guy you just have to find his soft spot.”

“This man has no soft spot Maria – he’s…he’s…I don’t know what he is.”

Throwing her hands in the air - Liz was getting desperate.

“Of course he would have to improve his communication skills- no girl wants a date that doesn’t talk – well okay I guess I’m the exception here – I like talking. By the way have I told you that Kyle is very excited about the fact that Max is from Antar.”

“You’ve told them? Maria are you crazy?”

“Shsh – he only knows what he needs to know. Alex was too suspicious about Max so I just told them that he’s from there and that was it. Apparently Max and Alex met yesterday by coincident and you know Alex – “

“And I know you! I should have never told you about Max or Zan argh – this name thing is driving me crazy.”

Liz was now pacing again the floor, thinking. Maria was watching her best friend with amusement, she had never seen Liz like that and although Liz would never admit it Maria knew that deep inside her best friend would like to be that special someone – it was so obvious.

“What are you thinking Maria?”

“Oh just that you and Max would make up a great couple.”

Liz stopped – had her best friend been brainwashed? Because this could just not be possible.

“MARIA!!! I think you are missing the seriousness of the situation! This isn’t funny okay?!”

“I think it is – actually I like the situation you’re in and I can’t wait to see what you’re planning to do to get out of it.”

“So you’re not going to help me?”

“Maybe later but in the moment I will just enjoy and watch.”

“How can you call yourself my friend? I’m desperate here, this is an impasse and you’re not going to support me.”

“Well maybe you should have thought about that before you made that stupid comment. But you and your emancipated self could just not shut up. I think that this might be a good chance or you to realize that you can’t do everything Liz. I’m sorry to say but Max is the best thing that could have happened to you – he’s the best opponent you could have so cheer up and let the games begin.”

This was a nightmare. Liz had put all her hope into Maria because she knew a lot of tricks and also a lot of willing women AND she knew men. How could she not help her? This wasn’t fair.

“So – tomorrow you and Max are you coming?”

“Coming where?”

“Clubbing? God – Liz, are you forgetting about everything you know Thursday is our clubbing day and what better way to find Max a girl.”

“He doesn’t even dance Maria.”

“Well then you better teach him – I better get going – work starts soon. Have fun.”

“HAHA! Who needs enemies if he has friends like you!”

“I love you too chica!”

And with that Maria closed the door behind her. This could just not be possible!

*****************

Zan was following Jeff where ever he went. He had shown him to some of the chemistry and biology laboratories. Things were much more complicated on Earth than on Antar. As humans didn’t have powers they had to find a way to handle things their own way.

“What is it with those children Mr Parker?”

“They’re ill Zan – very ill – incurable.”

“But how…and why? They are so young and…”

It was the first time that Jeff saw something like emotions on the crown prince’s face.

“We can’t heal like you do Zan. The only way to heal people is to find the right remedy for it. Unfortunately there’re still some illnesses we haven’t found one for. So we can only hope and wait that it will get better…”

“And if it doesn’t get better?”

Zan was afraid to hear the answer. He had seen so many children on this particular floor that it made his heart ache to just know that they were suffering. Of course an Antar children did also die but because of catastrophes or by accident. Hardly anybody died because of an illness.

“…they die.”

Jeff and Zan were looking at each other. Neither Jeff nor Zan said a word for the time they were there. Only when they stepped out of the hospital Zan found his voice again.

“So you’re a doctor…how can you work there?”

“What do you mean?”

“Don’t you get mad at the fact that you see those children suffer and that you can’t help them and that there is no remedy for it?”

“Of course it is depressing but after all I can ease their pain and I can make them laugh and I can do everything possible to find a remedy one day. When you have the responsibility for someone as I do for those children it is also important to make them happy and make them feel safe and protected and to let them know that you care about them and that you’ll do everything in your power to be there for them. I will never stop searching for a remedy Zan – never because I’m sure that somewhere out there we’ll one day find what we’re looking for. It is depressing and sometimes I have my doubts but I know that they’re confiding in me and that I’ve to be strong for them. If I’m not strong then who is? It takes a lot of patience and willpower to keep the search on but in the end I know that it was all worth it.”

Zan was thinking about everything Jeff had just said. And he realized that humans would be really lost if it wasn’t for people like Jeff Parker who believed in their work and who believed that there was a cure for everything.

“So how about lunch Zan? I’m getting hungry…”

“Sounds good.”

*****************

Jeff drove them out of the city to a restaurant at the Atlantic ocean.

“So tell me Mr Parker- because I was wondering – how did you and my father meet?”

“Oh that’s a long story.”

“I’ve time.”

Somehow Jeff liked this young man. He still couldn’t quite understand why his daughter and Zan wouldn’t get along but he really enjoyed his company. Zan reminded him a lot of his father so many years ago.

“Well your father was sent here many years ago. I was still a medicine student at Harvard and one day one of my Professors walked up to me telling me that we would expect a visitor from Antar soon and I was to guide him around and so on. Your father was still the crown prince back then so your grandfather was king on Antar. He wasn’t very pleased about the fact that your father wanted to come to Earth because he didn’t really believe in the future of the friendship between Antar and Earth. I don’t know why but he hated us for some reason. Anyway your father wanted to form his own impression of Earth so he travelled here. It was awkward – I can tell you that. There he was the future king of a whole planet with his servants and advisers and his powers that I didn’t know much about back then and there was me – little Jeff Parker.”




Jeff started chuckling remembering their first meeting. Zan had stopped chewing and was smirking also. This must have been a really strange situation.

“Anyway – after convincing your father that there was no reason to be afraid of humans we really got good friends. Terse he came back often during the years until your grandfather died and he became king. Since then I have only seen him one time and that is also a long time ago. We’ve been in contact but that was it.”

“Well maybe you could visit us some time on Antar. I’m sure my father would really like that.”

“Yeah I guess so.”

Something wasn’t right. Zan had the strange feeling that there was more to the just given story and that Mr Parker hadn’t told him the whole truth. But he had seen and heard enough for now so had would ask him again some other day.

“So what I was wondering has my father said anything about my sister or Rath coming here?”

“As much as I now they will I just don’t know when. Nancy and me have their rooms ready.”

“They’ll be staying with you?”

“Yes…and don’t even start asking me why them and not you. Ask your father when you’re back okay? Ready? Can we go?”

Zan nodded his head ‘yes’. Something more to think about. So his suspensions had been right. His father wanted him to spend time with Liz – but why?
He had to stifle a laugh when he thought about her face yesterday when he really had agreed to her self-confident comment that she could find him a girl. Her face had betrayed her – she hand never expected him to tell her to do so and she had never expected him to challenge her and make a bet out of it. So he still had to think of what she had to do if she lost – and she would lose! That was for sure. He had no intention at all to fall for a human girl and he would be everything but charming to any girl she would introduce him to. Not because he didn't like the idea of getting to know human women - they could be fun - he was sure of that but he wanted to see Liz getting desperate with every passing day. Oh yeah - he would enjoy that a lot! This girl had to learn a lesson too!

**************

Part 14

Liz was zapping through the stations when she heard the door open and saw Zan entering. He looked kinda exhausted to her and she started wondering what her father and him had done the whole day.

“Hey – how was your day?”

“Exhausting but I’ve seen and learned a lot.”

He let himself fall onto the couch and closed his eyes.

“Do you wanna talk about it?”

Liz offered, turning off the television and looking at him.

“Yes, no – I mean. Your Dad took me into all those laboratories at Harvard and then we went to a hospital. I never knew that something like that existed.”

“What do you do an Antar if someone gets ill?”

“Antarian people usually don’t get ill – they get killed or they die of age but they hardly die of illnesses. Usually if somebody gets ill we heal them – that’s it. To see all those children was affecting me so much – it was awful.”

Liz was quiet she wasn’t sure what to say after all she had visited her father many times and she knew exactly what Zan was feeling. That was also why she was studying Microbiology – she was hoping that she might find something one day.

“So are you hungry?”

“Yes, something to eat would be nice.”

“Fine, then I’ll order pizza and while we’re waiting I’m going to teach you how to dance.”

“You what?”

Zan’s tiredness was suddenly like blown away. What did she just say? Dancing?

“We’re going out tomorrow – tomorrow is Thursday that means clubbing and that means dancing and that means also finding you a girl.”

Now he was smirking the dirtiest way possible so she really would try - oh that would be so much fun.

“So why do I have to learn dancing? I mean after all the girl is supposed to fall for me and for someone you want me to be.”

“Oh c’mon Max. It would do you no harm.”

Liz some how was a little bit excited about the idea teaching him how to dance. She turned the stereo on.

“Get used to the rhythm Max, I’m going to call for pizza and when I’m back I’m going to teach you.

When she left for the kitchen Zan slowly walked up to the stereo. He really didn’t like the music playing so with holding his hand above the tuner he changed the station.
What he didn’t know was the fact that Liz was watching him.
What was going on with her? Seeing him bending in front of her stereo made her heart beat faster. His face was illuminated by the candles she had lit some time ago. His dark soulful eyes were amazing – so alive and awake. Unintentionally biting his lip he was straitening again and turning towards her.
Zan had sensed her some seconds ago and was able to watch her reflection in the window pane. She was watching him – he had never seen someone watching him so intensely.

“So what about this dancing lesson Parker?”

“Uhm…yeah…sure…how…how about that song?”

They were playing a faster song now and Zan had absolutely no idea how to move and what to do.

“Show me – I guess you’re dancing totally different like we do.”

Okay – this wasn’t going as she had hoped. What now? ‘Close your eyes and go for it’ a voice deep inside her told her and so she did.
Zan was fascinated by her movements. She was swinging her hips with closed eyes. It was like she had been drawn into another world. Then she suddenly opened her eyes again and danced into his direction taking his hands and pulling him behind her. What was he supposed to do? Liz was now pressing her body against his. She could feel his trained muscles against her breasts. She pulled his arms around her waist and continued her movements of her hips.

“Follow my movement Max.”

She whispered softly. He did as he was told and it was easier than he thought it would be. His body took over a movement of its own. Forgetting everything around them they didn’t stop when another song started playing and another and another. Only when the doorbell rang they came back to reality, both were breathing heavily staring at each other.

“I better get that.”

Liz said slightly flushed but in a way grateful for the disturbance. The pizza was there - so she paid the boy and came back into the apartment.

“Dinner is ready.”

She announced smiling as if nothing had happened.
What do you think Parker? He’s an antarian crown prince he sure hasn’t noticed anything and even if he did he wouldn’t care. Get a grip!!!
Zan was sitting at the table in the kitchen.

“So I hope you’re still hungry – the pizza smells really good.”

Why was she acting like an idiot? He was just watching her with no expression at all on his face.

“What’s on that?”

“Cheese, pepperoni, mushrooms…enjoy it.”

“Thanks but do you have something to spice it up?”

“Spice it up?”

“Yeah your human food is lacking off spice. I like it spicy.”

“Well…uhm how about some Tabasco?”

“I don’t know what it is but let’s try it.”

She stood up, walked up to the fridge and handed him the bottle.

“I wouldn’t pour too much it’s really spicy.”

But he wouldn’t listen. He was pouring a large amount of Tabasco sauce on his slice, took a bite and made a satisfied face.

“This is good.”

Zan then nodded slowly taking another bite.

“Well at least we have solved that problem, so better always take a bottle Tabasco with you. Do you also pour it into your drink?”

“Hm…something to think about. I should really try that. You wanna try?”

“Urgh…no thank you. I always start sweating when I eat spicy food. So…uhm…you’re a fast learner…how do you like dancing?”

“It’s nice really and I have to admit that I slowly start understanding why you like listening to music.”

“Fine, I’m glad we finally come to some way of understanding. So how do you dance on Antar?”

“Well we don’t dance that close, why don’t I show you when we have finished dinner.”

“That would be nice. I would like that. Has my Dad said anything about tomorrow?”

“No I guess he wants us to spend the time together again or I could go alone again.”

“Would you like to do that? I mean you haven’t told me about yesterday. What did you do the whole day? You’ve told me about this guy you’ve met. Sounded to me like he was a homeless. What did you talk about and did you get along well?”

“Yeah well actually I took one look at a map and scanned it so it wasn’t a big problem to find my way…I…”

“Wait you scanned it?”

“Yes…I uhm…we scan books…we look at the text and scan it meanwhile.”

“What does that mean?”

“Uhm…do you have a book? I think it is the best way to show you.”

Liz handed him a book about microbiology that she had a hard time understanding. He opened it and read two pages, then he handed it back to her and started reciting the whole pages without a mistake.”

“Wow…that is incredible – I wish I could do that…that’s a big handy isn’t it?”

“I guess so I mean I don’t know what it’s like for you but I can surely say that it saves a lot of time. Anyway I met this guy and we talked about life in general. No big deal. So wanna dance again?”

**************

Part 15

After cleaning the dishes they walked back into the living room and awkward silence fell upon them. Liz then walked up to the stereo again and turned it on. As she didn’t like the music they were playing she inserted a CD into the CD-player and started it.

“Okay what you have to do is not much different from what you did earlier – you just put your arms around my waist and I put mine around your neck and then we dance.

“Sounds not that difficult.”

“It isn’t.”

He did as she had told him and held her close to his body again. He was able to smell her scent – her hair, her skin and was her heart beating faster? Or was it his? What was happening to him? He had never experienced something like that before.
Liz was feeling as confused as he did. What was she doing here?

“I…uhm…think that you’ve got the idea.”

“Yeah I guess so.”

He was still holding her in his arms looking down on her into her big brown eyes. Something held him back to let her go although he didn’t know what it was. This human girl made him feel things he didn’t know - and he surely didn’t know what to do next.

“So how do I approach a girl? How do I you know - get to know someone?”

“I…uhm…don’t know why…why don’t you ask Alex or Kyle. Talking about Kyle and Vicky. I don’t know how that happened well actually I did. Maria couldn’t keep her big mouth shut. Kyle knows that you’re from Antar he’s a fan of your planet and I guess when he sees you he’ll know who you really are.”

“Do you really think? Well we’ll see. So Maria knows huh?”

“Of course she knows, she’s my best friend.”

“But I thought Alex is also your best friend and he doesn’t know.”

“Oh yeah I’ve heard you’ve met him right?”

“Yes…he invited me for breakfast. He’s a really weird guy you know that?”

“Yes I do – but he’ll go through thick and thin for me and Maria and vice verso and that’s why he’s one of my best friends.”

“So you propose that I should better ask him – the ultimate single?”

Liz made a face. He was right maybe Alex wasn’t the best choice for this matter.

“Then ask Kyle or Jordan I’m sure he’ll be there also.”

“Right Jordan, I’ve heard that name. Maria mentioned it on this strange machine. What is that by the way?”

He was pointing at her answering machine.

“Oh that! That is an answering machine. When someone is calling and I’m not in they can leave a message and I can call them back.”

“Oh well I’ve heard her mentioning that name. So who is he? Does he want to be your mate?”

“Well – I guess he wants to go out on a date but I don’t – I mean he’s a great guy. He’s just not my type so…”

“So what is your type Liz Parker?”

“Someone who is a match for me. Someone who is not afraid to say ‘no’ and doesn’t always share my opinion. But I was wondering. If I have to find you a girl I have to know what I’m looking for you know….size…age…hair colour what ever.”

They sat now on the couch again. Zan was watching the flames flickering while he was thinking about her question. He never really had thought about this matter. While having fun with the female servants he didn’t really care what they looked like and as they hadn’t found the perfect match for him on Antar he hadn’t pondered this.

“I don’t know…I never really thought about this.”

“But you’ve to know what you like and what you don’t like. What attracts you and what not.”

“Why don’t I just tell you tomorrow when we go there. I mean I don’t see why you’re in such a hurry Liz. I’ll stay here for some time so take your time.”

“You’re enjoying this don’t you?”

“Enormously!”

He admitted smiling at her. And although the situation was everything but funny for her she had to chuckle. Who would have thought that Zan would make her even smile. Maybe he wasn’t such a big asshole as she had thought.

“So how about that dancing lesson of yours?”

She got up again.

“Although we don’t have the music for it, I’m sure I can get the picture if you just show me.”

“You really wanna know how to dance on Antar?”

Zan walked up to her again.

“Well, yes – it might come in handy one day. Who knows maybe I’ll one day visit your planet.”

He was just nodding his head, then considered what to do next. Would she allow him to touch her? Sure she would you fool – she has touched you before.

“I need to touch you.”

There was something in his voice, something disturbing. What would happen next? He took her hands in his and was staring into her eyes.

“Look at me Liz and try to match your breathing with mine.”

Did this really have something to do with the dancing or what was he trying to do to her but Liz did as she was told. It was now that she saw the small golden sparkles in his eyes. Even his eyes were betraying him. He really was a prince. Suddenly she heard a melody. Where was this coming from?
Zan could feel her discomfort that soon vanished when the music grew louder around them. They were now dancing to a music that was only in their heads and they never let go of the other. Liz was mesmerized. So many things were going around in her head. Dancing like this reminded her a little bit of the medieval dances she had heard about. Zan let go of her hands and suddenly the melody was gone.

“How did you do that?”

“The melody is within me and if I touch you and allow you to get into me you can hear it too. I could also make you see things within me but only if I want you too.”

“Did you see things within me?”

“No because you can block me out as well…although your human brain is weaker than mine because you aren’t used to this kind of…uhm…handling…your brain is really strong Liz. And I don’t want to intrude on your thoughts. I better get to bed. I’m tired.”

And with that he left a confused Liz standing in the middle of the living room. She was still trying to understand everything and this melody. It had been like nothing that she had ever heard before. Slowly she blew out the candles and went to bed also.

*****************

The next day passed by very quickly and before she knew it Liz was standing in the club together with Max who was again taking in every detail. They had spent half of the day apart and half of the day together. She had taken him to the library because she had get some books back and fetch some. They ended up discussing one book that he had scanned while she had been searching for her books while they were sitting in a Café.

“Hey guys!!!”

Maria suddenly appeared next to them hugging Liz then smiling at Max.

“Hallo Max – how are you? I hope better?”

“Who said I wasn’t fine?”

“I just heard about your adjusting problems…don’t take me too serious Max.”

Before Liz could say anything Maria pulled Max behind her to the bar. Alex stood in front of her.

“He’s really weird Liz.”

“Good he thinks the same thing about you. Alex I need your help. Please introduce him to as many women as possible.”

“You’re kidding me right? I mean I’m sure he knows more than I do.”

“Alex…C’mon…Kyle won’t be here for the next two hours please I really need your help.”

“Does this have to do something with the bet Maria refused to fill me in on?”

“Yes…I…to cut it short. I have to find him a girlfriend until he leaves Boston again. I took that bet because he doesn’t believe that I would make it. Alex please.”

“How did you get into this situation Liz? I’ll think about it.”

And with that he left her standing there. But she soon followed him and sat down at a table Maria and Max were already sitting at.

**************



Life is a freak show and we're the stars
posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:11:42 AM
Part 16

Maria was watching Max and how he was taking in his surroundings. Liz was of course trying to avoid looking at him but she knew that there was something between the two of them…now it was her task to open up their eyes. It was so obvious.

“So Max how do you like it here? Is it very different from Antar?”

“Yes sure it is we don’t have Clubs like that and we only dance on special occasions not for fun. You humans really do a lot for fun don’t you?”

“Why yes. I mean you can’t always work. So you and Liz – are you getting along?”

“Why is that so important for you?”

“Oh I was just wondering – oh Jordan! Over here!”

Maria jumped up from her seat and was waving for a guy who had just entered the Club and was looking around – searching for his party. Max remembered that name. Jordan – he was interested in Liz. Now this could be interesting. How do humans behave if they’re interested in someone. Perhaps he could learn something. The guy was around his age, had nearly black, short hair, brown eyes and was his height.

“Hi everybody – sorry I’m late but my meeting lasted longer than expected.”

He excused himself and took Maria into his arms.

“Hey chica.”

“Hey Jordan, Jordan this is Max Evans a friend of the Parker’s, he’s staying with Liz.”

“No kidding - hi nice meeting you.”

Max and Jordan shook hands without a word from Max who sat back down. In that exact moment Jordan turned towards Liz and was smiling at her.

“Hey Lizzie.”

“Hey Jordan.”

They gave each other a peck on the cheek and were smiling. He took the seat next to her. Zan could see the difference Jordan was looking at Liz.

“So where are you from Max?”

“Jordan – do you wanna dance?”

Liz stood up with an urgency, pulling Jordan behind her.

“Now that was obvious.”

Alex chuckled before taking a sip from his glass.

“So Max – Maria has told us. You’re from Antar. Might sound crazy but I knew that there was something strange about you.”

“Strange?”

“Yes – you just seem so – pardon me – out of space. But that’s okay buddy. I feel a lot more comfortable now. I don’t have to be afraid anymore that you’re just a crazy dude who wants to get into Liz’ pants.”

“What tells you that I’m not a crazy dude from out of space who just wants to get into Liz’ pants?”

Zan’s expression wasn’t giving away if he was serious or kidding so Alex swallowed hard and muttered.

“Touché.”

Smiling Zan lifted his glass with a glint of satisfaction in his eyes and sipped at his cherry coke – this had been so easy.

*****************

Maria had a hard time not to burst out laughing after Max’ last comment. He was just too hilarious. She noticed Alex watching Max out of his eyes and whispered.

“Don’t worry Alex, he’s a nice guy. I mean you challenged him and he won.”

“I don’t know he still gives me the creeps. Why is he here anyway?”

“Because he’s supposed to get to know the human race. Why don’t you just try to be nice to him? He’s from another planet for god’s sake don’t you think that he has a hard time already?”

“I think Kyle can take that part of being nice to him. He called me this afternoon telling me how excited he’s to finally meet someone from Antar. He has never seen someone from this planet. Do they really look like we do or is that just a camouflage that he’s wearing.”

Maria now couldn’t hold back her giggles.

“Oh boy Alex you’re too much. Ask him.”

In that exact moment a blonde dressed in a blue dress walked up to Max.

“Hey my name is Theresa and my friends and me were wondering if we’ve ever seen you here and it was me who had the pleasure of coming over and asking you.”

‘Here we go’ Maria thought and wanted to say something so that Max wouldn’t embarrass himself but he surprised her with his reaction.

“Well it’s nice meeting you Theresa and you’re right I’ve never been here before. I’m new to the city.”

“Oh wow is that true.”

“Yeah – would you like to dance?”

“I would love that.”

And with that she took Max’ hands and they made their way to the dance floor.

Alex was staring with his chin on the floor and he wasn’t the only male doing so.

“I…I can’t believe this…this guy is here for the first night and…have you seen this Maria? He’s here the first time and he’s already dancing with the hottest girl in the club. No one gets to dance with her – no one. He just comes here and…this is so not fair…he’s not even human.”

Maria was also a little bit shocked after the scene that had taken place in front of her. Everybody knew that Theresa never asked someone to dance if she didn’t know them. But what surprised her even more was the way Max and Theresa were dancing. This dancing lesson of Liz and him yesterday must have been very interesting to watch.

*****************

Theresa couldn’t believe her luck the second she had seen this hunk entering the club with little Lizzie Parker she knew that she had to have him. He was a dream come true.

“So where are you from? And what is your name?”

She had her arms around his neck caressing the back of it. He was a good dancer and she liked the feeling of his body pressed up to hers. Wondering what it would feel like without the clothes. Where were those feelings coming from? Usually it was her way or no way but this mysterious man had some kind of power over her – well it least she felt like that. Of course this couldn’t be possible! This wasn’t some Hollywood movie.

“My name is Max and as I told you I’m not from around here. Is it that important to know where I’m from?”

“No – no you’re right cuz now you’re here. Where are you staying?”

“Why do you wanna know?”

Zan knew that he could have his way with this weak human. She was easy to manipulate, he had figured that out the second she had walked up to him. Who needed servants if human women were so easy to impress – well no – not all – correction here – Liz wasn’t easy to impress. Out of his eye he could see her dancing with this Jordan guy but why was she watching him from time to time? Humans!

“Right again – you know my father is the owner of this Club.”

“Really?”

“Yes and he has some private rooms just above the Club – you wanna go there?”

Oh boy this really was too easy. He would have to tell Rath how easy it was on this planet to have sex. No ordering, no special servants - nothing.

“I would like that.”

*****************
Liz couldn’t believe her eyes when Zan started dancing with Theresa, she had really taught him well maybe a little too well noticing the erotic movements of his hips and how he was holding her.

“Lizzie – everything okay?”

“Hm…what? Oh Jordan I’m sorry I just…uhm…forget it.”

The next moment she could see Max leaving with this bitch through the ‘Authorized persons only’ door. Damn it! What was he doing? Was that the aim of it? Having sex with some bimbo? How was she supposed to find him a girl if he was screwing around? She let go of Jordan and walked up to Maria.

“Why did you let him go?”

“Why me? I’m not responsible for him chica and besides that why do you care? I thought you hate him.”

“Yes…no…I mean…Theresa Carter? He knows nothing about human sex Maria.”

“Well it can’t be that different from antarian or what do you think? Calm down Liz will you. He’s a big boy. He can take care of himself.”

There was nothing more Liz could say because she felt Jordan standing right behind her. She wasn’t sure about her feelings for him but she knew her feeling concerning Zan. They would have to talk – oh yes they did! How could she ever think that their dancing yesterday had affected him even a bit? Wake up Liz!
She sat down again keeping an eye on the door. Time went by and nothing happened.

“Hey.”

Kyle and Vicky were suddenly standing at their table. Liz hadn’t even noticed them walking up to them because she had her eyes still fixed on the door.

“So Liz where is your antarian guest Kyle is driving me crazy.”

In the moment Liz wanted to say something she could see Zan opening the door – but no sight of Theresa. What had he done to her?

“There he is.”

Maria shrieked happily. Kyle turned around at once, walking up to Max shaking his hand on end and babbling.

“Oh wow this is so fascinating. I’ve never met an Antarian this is really an honour I’m very interested in your home planet and I wish I could go there one day.”

Zan didn’t know what was happening to him. This guy was as bad as Maria talking and talking.

“You have to excuse my fiancé – he’s a little excited about the fact that you’re from Antar. My name is Vicky and this Kyle.”

Vicky interrupted Kyle and shook Zan’s hand.

“Uhm hi nice meeting you – call me Max. So you’re the two who’re getting married.”

“Yes, yes that’s right and I would be very honoured if you would come also.”

Kyle kept on babbling. He couldn’t believe his luck. This guy looked familiar, he had seen his face somewhere but couldn’t pinpoint it. Perhaps it was just an antarian thing after all you could also distinguish if somebody was from Japan or America.

**************

Part 17

Zan sat down next to Kyle who was still babbling and telling him how much he loved Antar and so on but Zan felt Liz’ eyes on him. Why was she staring at him this way? Well maybe it had something to do with Theresa – he would ask her later. Jordan was desperately trying to get her attention.

“So tell me Max is that your real name? I always thought you have other names on Antar.”

Kyle kept on asking. Zan realized that this guy wouldn’t let him get away so soon and besides that he seemed okay a little bit importunate but that was okay.

“Well yes that is true, my real name is not Max but I would really prefer if you call me like that.”

“Hey no problem on my side here – so what do you do here and what do you do an Antar – I’m really sorry for asking so many questions but the books are sometimes really vague and…and…”

“Don’t worry Kyle I can understand that and actually I’ve also some questions for you about human women.”

“Oh hey – no problem. Although I’ve to admit as I’m now off the market for nearly four years I don’t know the women of today so well.”

“Off the market?”

“Well yes I know Vicky for four years now and after that there was no reason for me to go hunting – if you know what I mean.”

Kyle was now laughing not noticing confusion written all over Zan’s face. Alex who had been listening to the conversation was only shaking his head smirking.

“What Kyle wants to say Max is that after he got to know Vicky he wasn’t interested in any other female anymore.”

“Oh – four years. It’s a long time isn’t it?”

“But Kyle don’t take Max too serious on this women topic he already disappeared with Theresa Carter for an hour.”

“No kidding? Theresa Parker? Well man you really don’t need any help here.”

“That was nothing, she just walked up to me and I asked her to dance. So about your questions Kyle. I’m here to get to know the human race and on Antar I don’t really do anything special. I attend political meetings with my father etc. nothing exciting. So you wanna visit us one day?”

“Oh I would love to do that but it’s quite expensive to go there so I guess I’ll either have to win in the lottery or keep on saving for another at least five years.”

“Well maybe I can help you with that I have some connections just let me know when you want to go and where you want to stay. Any particular region you prefer?”

“I would really like to see the palace. Is it as grandiose as I’ve heard?”

“Depending on your definition of grandiose…what do you know or what do you think?”

“I’ve heard that every member of the royal family has their own wing with their own staff and I’ve read somewhere that the palace has at least 200 rooms for god knows who. I mean what purpose has it to have a palace with so many rooms and you don’t need them all?”

“Well leave it to the royal family don’t you think?”

“Right – I can’t believe that Antar still lives in monarchy. Do you like it?”

“Uhm – I would rather avoid this topic if possible. I don’t like talking about the royal family.”

“Oh sure – I’m sorry if I insulted you.”

Yep – Zan really liked this guy he was paying him the needed respect – some humans could learn a thing or two from him that was for sure.

*****************
Jordan had been trying to talk to Liz the whole evening but she was obviously not paying any attention to what he was saying or doing. When he was sick of it he grabbed her by the arm and pulled her behind him.

“What is the matter with you Liz? You’re not paying attention to anything I say or do – I thought that we finally were becoming closer but you just shut off. I…help me here Liz. Has this something to do with this Max guy? Why is he staying at your apartment anyway?”

“Jordan stop it – okay?! We’re not together, we’re not even dating so stop acting like you’re my boyfriend got it? And I don’t have to answer any of your questions. I…”

She could see the hurt in his eyes. Jordan had a crush on her that she knew for sure but she couldn’t care less in the moment.

“Listen Jordan – I’m sorry I just had some really tough days and I’m not in a good mood either. I…I…”

In that moment Theresa Carter decided to get back to the club. She seemed like in trance. What the hell had he done to her – how could anyone smile so stupid.

“Okay I’m outta here.”

Before Liz was able to regain her composure Jordan was out of the door.

“Just great. Damn it.”

Returning to her table Maria was missing and the others were talking or dancing.

“I’m going home. Alex please tell Maria to call me tomorrow. Max are you coming or are you staying?”

“No I’m coming – Kyle I hope we’ll meet again.”

*****************
Maria had just entered one of the toilet stalls when she could make out the voices of Theresa Carter and two of her superficial friends.

“Theresa you were gone for over an hour – what did that guy do to you?”

“Sandra I’m speechless – this guy – he’s – I can’t find the words –I don’t know what happened – I mean…I do know but I don’t know how he did it.”

“Stop babbling Theresa spill it.”

“We got into my Dad’s room and the next thing I can remember is that I was literally attacking his lips and let me tell you he can kiss – oh my god – and…”

The next thing Maria could hear was a door opening and the three girls were suddenly quiet. After the door was closed again one of the friends asked.

“Now did you do it? Did you have sex with him or not because I know you usually don’t do this on the first evening.”

“Melanie you may be my friend but I don’t tell you everything. Let me just say – his hands are magic, his body is a dream come true and I’ll do everything that god may grant me one more night with this man.”

After that the girls were gone and Maria finally found the courage to breath again and come out of her stall. She was for the first time in her life speechless.

**************

Part 18

Telio was knocking at Rath’s door. The king had sent him to inform Rath and Vilandra that his highness was expecting them.

“Did he say want he wanted Telio?”

“No Sir and I would never dare to ask him.”

“Telio, what would they do without you. Have you heard anything about prince Zan?”

“I’m sorry Sir but I don’t. I’m sure that he is doing fine though, he’s a very intelligent man.”

Rath just nodded and ordered Telio out of his room. He had the feeling that the king would soon send him to Earth and honestly he was excited about the fact. In the last few days he had learned a lot about this race and their planet.

One hour later he entered the private living room of his king. It was not often that people not belonging to the royal family were allowed here.

“Ah Rath, how are you doing?”

“Your highness thank you I’m fine.”

“Rath please take a seat. I’ve to talk to you before my daughter princess Vilandra arrives here.”

Rath did as he was told.

“I know that you’re the best friend of my son and I really appreciate it. I will send you and Vilandra to Earth in two or three days depending on the recommendation of my friend Jeff Parker Zan is staying with. You and Vilandra will also stay there. Now I have a special task for you.”

“What ever you want your highness.”

“I did not only sent Zan to Earth so that he gets to know the human race. I sent him there to especially get to know Liz Parker. Jeff Parker’s daughter.”

“I don’t understand Sir, I mean…”

“I won’t tell you the whole story Rath, not now, let’s just say that I wanted to test something and I want you to tell me how they’re getting along and what Zan has to say about her.”

“Please excuse the question your highness but what are Vilandra and me supposed to do there then?”

“Well I thought it would be nice for you to go there too. And I think that Zan would appreciate your presence. And now please leave I want to talk to Vilandra alone.”

Great now he was even more confused then before.

*****************
Liz hadn’t said a word since they left the Club. Why was she acting like she did. After all Zan was a grown man and he could do what ever he wanted. But had this to be in her presence?! Damn it!

“Okay so let’s get this straight.”

She suddenly stopped walking and turned towards Zan who was right behind her.

“I didn’t like your behaviour today.”

“Why? I mean what did I do?”

“What did you do? Hell you disappeared with Theresa Carter! How am I supposed to find you a girl if you screw Theresa Carter? And…and besides that it isn’t nice to disappear. You want to live a human life while you’re here? Then start acting like one!”

“Oh great are we back to this discussion! You know Liz I’m so sick of you telling me how to act and how to behave. I enjoyed the evening, I really did so why are you now mad at me?”

“Because…I…I don’t like you to…to…I just want to make sure that you’re fine and…”

Zan didn’t know what to say or do so he carefully lifted his hand to her cheek, drawing slow circles with his thumb on her temple.

“You have a strange way to show me that you care about me Liz Parker. Let me assure you though that I really appreciate it. So thank you.”

They were now again glancing into each others eyes. This tiny act of gentleness had startled both of them. Neither Liz nor Zan were breaking the contact instead they seemed like transferred into another time and place where nothing else mattered but them.
He wasn’t able to describe the urge to touch her, to be near her. This wasn’t good – no it was good – it felt right, so right.

“I think we better get going it’s late.”

Liz finally muttered and they walked to the car in silence. Now what was she going to do? This was all way too confusing.

*****************
The next morning Nancy Parker was very surprised when the whole apartment was silent. She slowly walked up to her daughter’s room and knocked.

“Liz? Liz are you in there?”

“Yes Mum, come in.”

She slowly opened the door and entered. Liz was sitting on her bed, leaned against the headboard scribbling in her journal.

“Good morning Lizzie. How are you today?”

“I’m fine I guess why?”

“Well your father wants to talk to you and Zan as soon as possible.”

“Oh okay, so have you seen him already?”

“No I thought it would be better if you do that. You know him, I don’t…so…take your time, eat breakfast and then join us in the garden okay?”

“Okay will do so.”

Nancy knew that something wasn’t right with her daughter.

“Liz are you sure you’re okay? I know that Zan’s presence takes its toll on you so when ever you want to talk you know I’m there.”

Liz put her journal down and smiled at her mother.

“I know Mum, thanks but I can handle it. Zan is a strange guy. I’ve never met someone like him. His view on things is so different from mine but he’s also so fascinating. I don’t know how to describe it.”

“So you like him?”

“I…I guess I do.”

Liz admitted shyly. Nancy had feared that this would happen. Since she knew about her husbands and the kings plan she had the feeling that she was betraying her daughter. This wasn’t right and her marriage had suffered a lot since that day. What was she supposed to do? Tell her daughter that although human she had some kind of destiny? Or maybe no destiny depending on the course of this acquaintance with the crown prince.

“Earth to Mum –what were you thinking about?”

Liz interrupted Nancy’s thoughts.

“Oh…I’m sorry Liz…I better get going. So see you later okay?”

“Okay, see ya.”

*****************
Liz got up and hid her journal before she went to wake up Zan.

“Zan? Uhm…or Max…whoever are you awake?”

She knocked at his door and opened it. He was sitting on the floor cross-legged, wearing nothing but a strange looking slacks, eyes closed, hands in his lap and on his forehead she could see a light – not really a light – it seemed as if it came from deep within him and it was a sign – a bluish light. He was oblivious to everything around him. Liz didn’t know what to do but the scientist in her made her stay. It was a couple of minutes before he opened up his eyes and they were also shimmering blue but after blinking one time they were brown again and the sign was fading away.

“Liz? How long have you been standing here?”

“A couple of minutes, what did you do?”

“I was just meditating, charging my spirit if you want to put it that way. So what is it?”

“My Mum just came by my father wants to talk to us. They are waiting for us in the garden so I think we better get ready, eat breakfast and join them.”

“Oh okay, do you know what your father wants to talk about?”

“Nope no idea…listen Max about yesterday.…”

“Yeah…”

“I’m sorry about my behaviour…can we just forget about it?”

“Sure.”

“Great see you then.”

**************

Part 19

Jeff and Nancy Parker were sitting in their garden.

“So you’ve told them to join us here?”

“Yes I did. Jeff do you really think that this is a good idea?”

“Nancy, darling we’ve talked about this a hundred times, you know that there’s nothing we can do.”

“Yes there is. You could tell the king that you made up your mind and that you don’t like the idea anymore to treat our children like guinea pigs.”

Jeff put his newspaper down and watched his wife. He knew that she never really has been comfortable with the idea of Zan coming to Earth. Ever since the king had made this one request she felt like betraying her beloved daughter. But what was he supposed to do? After all he had saved their daughters life and he had made this one request. So how was Jeff supposed to refuse?

Zan and Liz appeared in the doorway and then sat down at the table too.

“Good morning you two, how are you doing? How the clubbing Zan?”

“Oh I liked it Mr Parker, it was fun, so what do you want to talk about?”

No pleasantries. Straight to the point after al there had to be a reason that Mr Parker had ordered him and Liz up to talk to the.

“Okay, I talked to your father yesterday and he told me that he’ll send your sister Vilandra and your friend Rath here in two days.”

“Really, wow, I’m surprised I thought that it would take hi longer to do so. So when are they supposed to arrive here?”

“In the evening. You and Liz will get them. Is that okay Liz?”

“Yes, sure, why not. Was that all?”

“Well I was wondering how you’re getting along now? Still communication problems or are you two behaving like grown ups?”

“Dad…”

Liz was sick of hearing her father complaining about her and Zan, after all he wasn’t the one who had to deal with him night and day. Zan sat in his chair glancing at everybody sitting at the table.

“So what are you doing today?”

“I’ll meet Maria and Vicky in the city while Zan meets up with Kyle. You should have seen Kyle yesterday. He’s a big fan of Antar as you know and after hearing that Zan is from there he kept on babbling and babbling. I never thought that this was possible but he outdid Maria.”

“But he doesn’t know who you really are Zan or does he?”

“No, don’t worry Mr Parker, he doesn’t know. He only knows what he needs to know. He has even invited me to his wedding. I will now have to cancel it with Vilandra and Rath coming. I don’t want them to be alone.”

“Well maybe they can get an invitation too, after all they’re also from Antar I’m sure Kyle would like that.”

Liz smiled and Zan. This gesture was of course noticed by Jeff, conforming what his wife had told him. Liz had feelings for the prince so now he had to find out what the prince was thinking. Maybe this whole situation would after all serve its purpose. He would contact his friend again after the two had left.

*****************

Vicky, Maria and Liz met in the city and after walking around for at least three hours they decided to take a break.
Maria wasn’t sure if she should tell Liz what she had heard in the girls restroom yesterday.

“So tell me more about this antarian hunk.”

Vicky finally mentioning him.

“Well what do you want to know Vicky? I’m sure Kyle will be able to tell you everything about him after spending nearly the whole day with him.”

“That doesn’t count, Kyle is a man and have you ever tried talking with your boyfriend about a male acquaintance? All you’ll know after that is what car he’s driving, what beer he likes, what sports and so on…I think you get the picture right?”

Maria and Liz were both nodding their head in understanding.

“I don’t know as me a question and I’ll try to answer it. He may be staying with me but I don’t know that much about him.”

“Okay, so my first question of course would be why is he staying with you?”

“Because his father and mine are friends and out of some reasons they want him to stay with me so that he can get to know the human race. I don’t know why it’s like that although I’m working on it.”

“So how long will he stay?”

“I’ve no idea. Depending on his father’s wish. His sister and best friend will join him in two days. God help me, three Antarian.”

“Well I could help you chica.”

Maria suggested out of the blue.

“And why is that Maria? You hate showing people around and I can promise you that you’ll really hate showing those around because they have no sense for beauty and fun and…they’re just so different from our world as an be…”

“Well yesterday Zan didn’t give me the impression that he is oh so different from our men.”

Liz was rolling her eyes. She wanted to forget about this little scene yesterday as soon as possible.

“Why what? What did I miss?”

“He disappeared with Theresa Carter for one hour.”

Maria explained to Vicky.

“No shit? Theresa? Well then he is definitely an alien because Theresa would never go for a human man.”

Now they were all laughing.

“Okay stop it but seriously Maria why would you do that?”

“C’mon Liz, I’m your friend and that’s what friends are for. Vicky is busy with the preparations for the wedding and I know that you have your hands full with one Antarian…may be I could convince Alex to help also. One Antarian for one of us…”

Maria was so deep in thoughts that she didn’t notice her friends giggling.

“One Antarian for one of us? Maria do you know what you just said? It’s not about relationships here”

Liz smirked and took a sip of her water, still shaking her head slightly.

“Of course not – you know me.”

“Yeah that’s the problem here girlfriend.”

Vicky burst out laughing, joined by Liz. They had a hard time recovering as Maria was doing her best to look offended.

“Just admit it Maria you want to have your chance with Zan’s friend if he suits your demands. We know you girl.”

It was now Maria who had a hard time not to laugh. It was true. Vicky and especially Liz knew her very well.

“Okay I admit it. So when you have fetched them you call me and we can come up with a plan promise m Liz. You’re not the only single on Earth searching for some loving.”

“First of all Maria, I’m not searching, second of all if you want some one to love you better search for a human, Antarian don’t love, they get checked up if their genes match, they bond, they mate and that’s it. No dates, no presents, no falling in love and definitely no making love. Only destiny has a say in their world.”

*****************

“So you really want to tell me that you can’t choose your wife?”

Kyle was shocked by the story that Max had just told him. After meeting in the city Kyle had suggested to go home, sit in the garden and chat. He wanted to know everything about Antar. How often did you have the chance to ask an Antarian.

“And have you been checked up already? I mean you aren’t bonded are you?”

“No, I’m not bonded. And yes I’ve been checked up many times already, but no match yet.”

“And how do they decide that your match has been found? I mean…sorry if you’re sick of my questions but this is just so fascinating.…but I’m really wondering how they know that your match has been found. What are the criteria?”

“Well…first of all you have to know that the antarian people are divided into classes…I know that you don’t have that anymore but with the monarchy it’s just the best way to handle this. You’re of course only allowed to get bonded within your class. As we don’t have the concept of falling in love like you humans do we never had the problem that someone out of one class wanted to bond with one out of another class. So if you’re for example a member of the royal family you’ll be bonded to one whose family belongs to the nobility. The best match is of course 100% but I think the closest they ever got was 98%. Usually there’s only one in you class who’ll have a match as close as that. So as soon as both of them have been found, they’re bonded and that’s it.”

“Just out of curiosity have your people ever tried to match up people out of different classes? Maybe they would find this 100% match?”

“Good question…but I don’t think they did. Nobody every questioned this procedure so there was no reason to do so.”

“Wow…anyway, I hope you’ll enjoy my wedding next week.”

“I’m sure that it will be a really interesting new experience for me and thank you for the invitations for Rath and Vilandra.”

“Hey no problem and I expect you both to come to my bachelor’s party.”

“Sure, no women right?”

“Right, but I’m sure that the girls will also have a lot of fun and that your sister will enjoy it.”

“Let’s hope so, you don’t know my sister.”

Max and Kyle kept on talking about this and that. Kyle was asking question after question and Max answered them as good as possible. Always trying not reveal his real origin.

**************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:12:50 AM
Part 20

“Liz? Are you in there?”

She could hear a soft knock on her door – Zan – this was some improvement. Smiling she answered.

“Yeah come in.”

He opened the door and entered her room. She put her journal and pen down and watched him.

“So what is it? How was your day with my parents?”

“Um great I just have the slight feeling that your mother doesn’t like me at all.”

“Why is that?”

“I don’t know it’s just an impression. Nothing more – so what are you doing?”

“I’m writing in my journal.”

“Journal?”

“Yes it’s like a diary – I write all my thoughts down and what has happened to me.”

“Why would you do that?”

He took a seat on her bed.

“To get my emotions and thoughts out of my head, I just don’t want to talk to somebody so I write them down. Listen I wanted to talk to you about something.”

“Yes?”

“Maria offered to help us to fetch your friend and your sister tomorrow and she’ll also go to the mall with us if that is okay for you.”

“Yeah that’s fine with me I guess we could use any help available right?”

Liz was biding her lip smiling at him. His eyes were sparkling with amusement too.

“So I’ll see you tomorrow then.”

He slowly got up from her bed, intending to leave her room. Somehow he was hoping that she wouldn’t let him go.

“Zan?”

Good so she wanted him to stay.

“Yes?”

Turning around and walking up to her bed again.

“May I ask you something?”

“Sure…what is it?”

“Do you like the idea of your friend and sister coming here?”

He sat down again. Thinking about her question. Was he?

“Well somehow I do somehow I don’t. You know I haven’t seen my sister and Rath in a long time and I can’t wait to meet them again. But I also know that things will change when they’re here.”

“That’s what I’m afraid off. I’ve to tell you that I really started to like you the past days…”

“You do?”

Now that was interesting.

“Yes…but don’t let it get to you I still think that you’re a spoilt brat…”

Was she…what did the humans call it…flirting with him? He had heard the words but he had also seen her face and he figured that she hadn’t had the intention of pissing him off.

“Anyway…I just wanted you to know.”

“Well…I appreciate your honesty Liz and I think it’s only fair that I’m now honest with you. I’ve been an idiot to be so prejudiced about you and your race and everything, I really start respecting your people. I know when I made a mistake and I’m sorry and I’ll try to make Rath and Vilandra see that you’re really decent people.”

“Why thank you your majesty I feel really honoured.”

“Are you putting me on Liz Parker?”

“Oh no – I would never do something like that. Now get out, I need some sleep.”


Smirking he got up again and left her room. Lying down on his bed in his room he thought about what was going on here. He really liked a human girl – he felt something. He had to talk about that with Rath or maybe better Alex or Kyle? Geez this was all very confusing.

*****************
Again the queen had to say good-bye to one of her children. Vilandra had been complaining and sulking for the last days. She hated the idea of going to Earth just as much as her brother did. Rath on the other side was excited about the idea he couldn’t wait to get there finally. One reason was also that he didn’t like the idea of Zan being there all alone – he knew his friend and he knew his temper and he also knew about some enemies who wanted nothing more than to harm Zan.

“Tell Zan that I’m missing him, will you?”

“Sure Mum…do I really have to go?”

“Yes, yes you do. Don’t be so upset about it Vilandra. I’m sure Zan will make sure that you’ll have a great time. You won’t be alone there. Rath is also there and you’ll get to know some humans.”

Vilandra refused to say anything else until her and Rath had entered the Granolith.

Rath was the one who opened the door after their arrival on Earth.

“Are you ready Vil’?”

“Never but do I have a choice?”

They stepped out of the Granolith and looked around. Reading the message both weren’t so sure what to think about it. Suddenly a door opened and a male was entering the room.

“Vil’, Rath – welcome to Earth.”

They were looking at each other, the voice was familiar but the hair, the clothes –

“Zan?”

“Hey little sister.”

He embraced his sister for a short time and then greeted his best friend again.

“Geez bro’, what did they do to your hair?”

“Well in the beginning I also didn’t like the idea but I have to admit that I like it now. C’mon. Oh by the way they call me Max on this Planet most of the time so it would be good if you call me like that also.”

“Why do you have another name? And Zan is that really you? You seem so different. What did those humans do to you?”

“Well sis, I’m slowly adjusting so to say, you’ll also soon realize that it’s easier to behave a little more human. C’mon they’re all waiting out side.”

“Who’s waiting?”

”Don’t worry Rath it’s only Liz and her friend Maria. You’ll have the pleasure of experiencing a phenomenon called ‘shopping’ with them.”

Opening the door Rath and Vilandra were faced with two human women.

“Welcome to Earth Princess Vilandra and Rath, I’m Liz Parker and it’s my family that you’ll be staying with. This is my friend Maria DeLuca.”

“Hi nice meeting you.”

Maria extended her hand, both Rath and Vilandra were both moving out of her way not knowing what to do.
Liz had a hard time not to giggle and was watching Zan who was whispering something into Rath’s ear. He then walked up to Maria.

“Thank you very much, it’s nice meeting you too.”

Vilandra didn’t bother to move, she just wanted to be alone with her brother and Rath.
Maria and Liz were exchanging glances. If she was only a little bit like her brother they would have a hard time.

During their drive to the Mall and also while shopping Zan explained as much as possible to his sister and his friend. He figured that Liz and Maria would have a hard time already to dress them up like humans so it was only fair that he helped them a little bit.

“What about the hair Liz? Don’t you think Rath needs a new hair cut?”

Zan was enjoying this – he really did. Now he knew why Liz, although pissed off when she had fetched him, had enjoyed it so much to order him around.

“No way Zan – I will not cut my hair.”

“C’mon Rath only a little bit – I’ve a perfect picture in my mind of how you could wear it.”

Maria was standing right in front of him, gesticulating then touching his hair and nodding.

“Yes – yes I’ve an idea.”

“Take your hands off of me.”

Rath had a hard time believing that a woman was touching him without asking him for approval. What was it with those humans? He hadn’t read about that anywhere.

“Uhh – I’m sorry Spaceboy – geez what side of the bed did you get out today?”

Maria kept on walking straight to the next barber shop.

**************

Part 21

Zan and Liz were enjoying the interaction between Rath, Vilandra and Maria.

“Zan don’t you have anything to say that this Maria girl is bossing us around?”

Vilandra took the chance to talk to her brother, while Maria and Liz were busy with finding new clothes for Rath.

“Get used to it Vil’ first rule on Earth. Don’t expect any royal treatment.”

“You know what Zan? I think you’ve already spent too much time here on Earth. I’m a princess and I will not take those orders from those stupid humans.”

“Well then you take my orders dear sister, I’ve tried this royal card already on them and believe me you’ll regret it.”

“I don’t care.”

Zan knew that in the moment there was no way he could convince his sister to get down from her throne so he let it be. Instead he was concentrating on Rath coming out of the dressing room.

“Wow you really look great in those jeans Rath.”

Maria stated. It was definitely an easier job to transform Rath into a human than Vilandra. Rath had already mentioned that he had scanned a lot of books about Earth and its inhabitants. The new haircut also suited him.

“What do you think?”

He could see the desperation in Rath’s face.

“Why are you asking me dude? Ask the ladies!”

Oh yeah – Zan was really enjoying this.

“But if my opinion is so important to you then I have to admit that it looks good on you. Take it.”

*****************
After getting introduced to Mrs and Mr Parker Vilandra, Rath and Zan met in Liz’s apartment as her and Maria had decided to meet up with Alex again and they also wanted them to have some time alone.

“So this is where you’re living?”

Rath took in his surroundings.

“Yes – are you two hungry or thirsty? I have found a funny tasting beverage called Cherry Coke…wanna try?”

“Sure, why not.”

That was the first thing Vilandra had said to him after his small speech back at the mall.

“So you do still talk to me.”

“Haha very funny Zan – I wanna go home.”

“Too bad – here you go – I recommend to put some of this sauce into it. Human food isn’t as spicy as we like it so try to remember that.”

Zan sat down on the couch again and was watching Rath and his sister. They both took a tiny sip of the beverage.

“Hm…that’s good…so tell me Zan, do you really like it here? I’ve a hard time believing that.”

“Yeah well I do, I mean the first days I hated it as much as Vilandra but now – after getting to know more people and having some fights with Liz I finally like it. Although it’s so different from Antar.”

“You can say that. They don’t even have any servants.”

“Vil’ will you please stop complaining? It won’t get any better from that and wait until you get to know the humans a little bit better.”

“I don’t want to get to know them. Especially not Maria and Liz – I don’t like them.”

“That’s too bad because you’ll join them to a party in five days.”

“What no way! I will either go with you or I’ll stay at home.”

“Well then you can already start to think about what to do alone with the Parkers because Rath and me will go to another party – only men allowed - sorry.”

“What kind of party?”

“Uhm – Kyle – the guy who is a fan of Antar by the way – and his fiancé will get married on Saturday and they’re both having a party on Friday – it’s a custom here on Earth. Getting married is like our bonding. They were so kind to invite you also.”

“Do you think that’s a good idea to interact with them so close?”

“Rath – I now that you’re worried about my safety and I appreciate that but they don’t know who I am so I don’t have to worry about a thing. Kyle is a great guy, Alex will also be there. He’s weird but okay. Oh by the way I will ask Liz later to come up with some human names for you two.”

“What’s wrong with my name?”

Rath and Zan were both glancing annoyed at Vilandra.

“Because it doesn’t sound human.”

Zan was slowly getting impatient with his sister which always ended in a fight when his sister was around. She was just as stubborn as he.

“Okay you two stop it right here – I haven’t travelled this long way from one galaxy to the other to have the pleasure of one of your infamous brother-sister quarrels – Vilandra don’t make it harder than it is already. We’re now here on Earth, your father will decide when we’re allowed to get back - there’s nothing you can do about it. Getting us human names will help us getting adjusted…”

Before she could interject he held up a hand…

“…don’t interrupt me I’m not finished. I know that you don’t want to adjust – fine but then I hope you know that you’ll have a hard time here on Earth. Zan likes it here and I can’t wait to get to know these planet either so deal with it but don’t piss me off!”

Vilandra couldn’t believe that Rath had dared to talk to her like that. Turning to Zan for support she had to face the fact that he wasn’t going to say anything instead he had a hard time not to start laughing.

“You’ll so regret what you just said.”

Were her last words before leaving the two men in the apartment.

*****************

After his sister had left them Zan couldn’t hold back his laughter.

“I’m sorry man but that was just great – you never stood up to her before what happened?”

“I don’t know – honestly – I’m surprised just like you.”

“Well thank you – it’s good that she’s gone though I’ve to talk to you.”

“Okay. What about?”

“About Liz.”

Now this was interesting – maybe he could find out what the king’s real intention had been to send Zan here. Rath had thought about every possibility but hadn’t come up with a solution. Liz Parker was important to the king, he was testing something but what?

“She’s nice.”

Was all Rath said hoping that Zan would tell him something useful – something to report to the king. He felt a little bit bad about the fact that he was somehow spying on his best friend –no he wasn’t spying – he was observing – there you go –that sounded better.

“Enchanting.”

“Excuse me?”

Did he hear that right?

“I said enchanting – I think she’s enchanting Rath. I don’t know what’s happening to me. We’re not supposed to think or feel like that as Antarians but I do and there’s no way I can change that.”

“Wowow easy there buddy. Are you telling me that you’re having feelings for this human girl?”

“Yes.”

“And what do you feel I mean how do you know that it’s a feeling like…like you know…uhm…like what you just said.”

This was hard on him. Feelings like these – this was something new to Rath’s world.

“I like to see her smiling, when she does that I feel like my heart is jumping and I want to be around her and…that sounds crazy doesn’t it?”

“Honest?”

Zan nodded his head.

“Yes – it sounds really crazy. Do you have an explanation for that?”

“No – and do you want to know what my greatest fear is Rath? Now that I’ve experienced something like that I’m afraid that I’ll be disappointed when I finally get bonded. Know what I mean? Now that I know how drawn you can feel to somebody I might miss that later. I don’t think that this is what my father wanted me to do – developing feelings for a human.”

“Does she know?”

“No – I might be confused by all of this but I’m not stupid Rath.”

“So what are you going to do? Tell her or keep it to yourself?”

Zan lay down on the couch one arm above his eyes, thinking about the question.

“I don’t know – I…have to think about it I guess.”

“Then do so – I’m sorry man but I’m a bit tired, I think I better get back to my room and rest. See you tomorrow.”

“Yeah see ya!”

Well this had actually been a lame excuse but Rath needed some time to think about this information and before contacting the king he wanted to talk to Mr Parker. The king had told him that Mr Parker knew about the plan and they should come together and discuss the topic and possible consequences or steps.

**************

Part 22

Jeff Parker was sitting at his desk when he heard something behind him.

“Mr Parker Sir, may I talk to you?”

“Rath – sure take a seat. How can I help you?”

“I have orders from my king to talk to you about your daughter and Zan.”

“So you know why Zan is here?”

“Not exactly I was hoping that you could help me out here. I’m supposed to observe the prince and your daughter but honestly I’ve no idea what I’m looking for. What kind of plan is that?”

“Well it’s a long story and you’ve to promise me that you’ll never tell them – I feel bad about it anyway. The thing is the king and I’ve been friends now for nearly 30 years, I helped him when he spent some time on Earth and we became friends. Back then he was still crown prince of Antar. When his father died he became king and after that we hardly were in contact. 23 years ago my daughter was born and the doctors told us that she won’t survive the first year – she was born with an anomaly in her gene pool. They had been surprised that she made it through the pregnancy. There was nothing we could do but I was sure that I wouldn’t be sitting there watching precious baby girl dying. I knew that some people on Antar were healers and so I contacted your king, begging him to help me. I know that this was selfish - I had the privilege of knowing someone who might help my daughter and other people’s babies had to die. But when you’re in a situation like that you really don’t care about anybody else. My friend said that he would send somebody to fetch her and they would do everything possible to heal her. He never told me what they had done to her exactly I only know that one week later we had our daughter back and she was healthy. I promised that I would do everything to thank my friend and his people who helped her. Who would have thought that he would come up with such a strange request. He told me that in the process of healing Liz they had taken blood samples and had it analysed. To do so they started with a method which you usually use for your check up – and it turned out that she would be the perfect match for Zan.”

“But how can this be? She’s a human! This isn’t possible.”

“Well ask me how surprised I was when he told me that. See – the anomaly in her genes is actually an usual gene pool on your planet – Liz was missing an extra gene which would make it possible for her to survive on Earth – you all have this gene within you when you’re born that’s why you can stay on Earth. But Liz although human was lacking of it. The king and his healers changed her whole gene pool in adding the missing gene and with that she was able to survive in this atmosphere.”

“But if she does have our genes within her why doesn’t she have any powers?”

“The problem is humans only use a small part of their brain, you people are far more advanced in this. Liz never learned how to use hers fully so I guess that’s why she has no powers.”

“So how high is the match?”

“100%.”

Rath was now staring at the man in front of him. He was kidding him right? That was impossible – there was no such thing like a 100% match - this was not true.

“So are you telling me that the king already knows for 23 years that Zan’s perfect match had been found already and he didn’t say a thing?”

“Well yes – when he told me about it he made the request that he wanted them to get to know each other the human way. Your king is a hidden scientist and he wants to know if it’s possible that people who are a 100% match on your planet will get together without any help like getting promised etc. on our planet and besides that your king wants Zan to change the rules, he always liked the human way of getting together and he would like Zan to introduce this to Antar.”

“Now I’m shocked I never thought that my king would think this way. So what are we supposed to do now? I mean I’ve just talked to Zan and he told me that he liked your daughter…”

“That’s good, my wife said the same about Liz…so they’re on their way…just promise me Rath that you won’t tell them. If they fall in love fine, if not Zan will return to Antar and get his mate there.”

“This is a lot to take in.”

Rath muttered and leaned back in his seat, still staring at Jeff Parker.

“Yeah it is.”

“So is this the only reason Zan was sent here? So what am I and Vilandra doing here?”

“Well as I said before your king wants Zan to introduce new rules to your planet and as you’ll be his second in command and Vilandra is his sister you’re supposed to maybe experience just the same thing and if you don’t you still had the chance to make new experiences.”

“Are you telling me the truth because if we’ve all been checked up already many times in our life and if there’s already a match found on Earth then…”

“No don’t worry, nothing like that. If you find someone it’s nice if you don’t – don’t worry. Just enjoy your time. So how do you like it so far anyway?”

“Well it’s interesting that’s for sure – you people are so carefree – that’s nice I think. Vilandra hates it so if she behaves like a spoilt princess I’m sorry.”

“Oh don’t worry I’ve been warned already and Zan had been the same when he arrived here.”

“Yeah but Vilandra is a lot more arrogant and self-centred than Zan will ever be.”

“We’ll see.”

Jeff took a look at his watch and yawned.

“I’m sorry and I don’t want to sound rude but I’ve to get up early tomorrow so I better get to bed. Enjoy your stay here and have fun tomorrow.”

“Will try – good night sir.”

*****************

Liz and Maria sat on a bench in the Public Garden both enjoying their ice-cream.

“So what do you think of those two?”

Liz was thinking about Maria’s question.

“Well…I think Rath will be easy to transform if you want to put it that way but Vilandra she’ll be a bitch…hell what am I saying. She is a bitch.”

“Thank god and I thought I would be the only one thinking that. What is it with her? Not talking to anyone but her brother and Rath. Are we not good enough to talk to? Geez – why is she here anyway? Zan and Rath are enough to handle.”

“Aha – especially Rath right? I’ve seen how you looked at him.”

Liz was licking her ice with relish not caring about the glances she received from her best friend.

“Oh yeah – well Miss Dreamy-Eye I have seen you how you worshiped Zan with your eyes.”
“What? No way Maria.”

“Chica – no need to lie I know that shimmer in you eyes – you’ve a crush on him and that after all that he has done to you but lovers always tease each other.”

Liz was dumbfounded. There was no way that she could convince Maria of the contrary. Why was it so hard for her to plainly admit that she felt something for Zan.

“Okay let’s assume I feel something for him, which I’m not confirming here just for the record but let’s assume I do. There’s no way we could get closer. He’s from Antar and people there don’t love and I want to be loved, I want to be cherished - we’re too different.”

“Nonsense…you’re just searching for lame excuses here. I’m sure that if you get him to like expressing feelings then I’m sure you two could get together and live happily ever after.”

Now she was getting ridiculous.

“Oh Geez Maria, wake up – this is no fairytale this is real life…”

“…yeah well but he’s a prince nevertheless.”

“Always the optimist aren’t you?”

“You know me. So what are we going to do tomorrow with them? Alex will meet us for lunch if the others agree.”

“Okay then why don’t we meet all for lunch I don’t think that Rath and Vilandra will be up too early – I would like to talk to them both alone to lay the ground rules so to say.”

“Uhh – tough – I’m convinced that she’ll make our life a living hell for the first days.”

“As long as Zan and Rath are behaving I have no problem with that – you know me – I’m very good in ignoring people. I’ll not let her get to me.”

“You go girl – that’s my Liz – I better get going, see you tomorrow.”

Before Maria got up she hugged Liz and left. Liz wasn’t really in the mood to go home. At home she would be forced to see Zan and that was really confusing her in the moment. What was he doing to her?

**************

Part 23

Zan was sitting on the porch when Liz finally came back.

“Hey.”

She was smiling a shy smile. The talk with Maria had done something to her although she had promised herself not to be influenced by that. But honestly – the man sitting there on the steps to her home, watching the sunset was the most beautiful creature she had ever seen in her whole life. So who was she fooling?

“Hey.”

He smiled back.

“Sit with me?”

“Sure.”

Biting on her lip she sat down next to him also concentrating on the horizon.

“It’s beautiful isn’t it?”

He murmured not taking his eyes from the descending sun in fear he might start to stare at her again. Should he tell her?

“Yes it is – how is it on Antar?”

“Totally different…first of all we don’t have one sun and second of all the colours are totally different – nevertheless it doesn’t matter if you’re here on Earth or on Antar every sunset is unique – there’ll never be another one like this – every evening it’s different.”

Surprised by his sensitivity and the honesty in his words Liz glanced at him. The same time Zan decided to do the same with her and they were again starting into each others eyes. Ashamed both turned away. Clearing her throat Liz stood up.

“See you tomorrow Max – uhm one question what about Rath and Vilandra have you convinced them of getting human names?”

“Oh well Rath is okay with it but Vilandra will be a problem…”

“Never expected anything else. What’s your advice how should I treat her?”

“Why don’t you treat her like you treated me when I got here? Suddenly inhibited Miss Parker? You had no problem with standing up to me so don’t hold back with my sister she’s worse than I am.”

“I figured that out already – I thought maybe we could have breakfast tomorrow in the garden with her and Rath? Maybe I can get through to her.”

“Good luck with that…”

Liz wanted to turn around and leave him.

“Liz?”

“Yeah?”

“Thank you for trying anyway. I know it’s not easy.”

“No problem, good night Max.”

“Good night.”

Still smiling when she long had been gone he figured that he really had to do something about those strange feelings. This would end in a catastrophe otherwise. He was the crown prince of another planet, he wasn’t allowed to feel and he definitely wasn’t allowed to feel something for a human. There was somewhere a mate on his planet. He really had to talk to Rath again – but that could wait. First Rath and Vil’ should get used to the idea of staying on Earth. Perhaps they knew more about the purpose of staying on Earth he would talk to them again in the morning – that is if his sister would talk to him anyway. Knowing his sister well and knowing Liz now too he knew that it wouldn’t take long until there would be one discussion after another.

*****************
The next morning when Rath woke up he continued doing what he did before he went to sleep – he thought about this whole Zan-Liz situation. How could this be possible? A human with antarian genes? No wait a human with an anomaly in her genes which would make her an Antarian? That all made no sense. Why had he to be the one to know everything about the king’s intentions? Well him and Jeff Parker knew everything. He was interrupted by a knock.

“Yes?”

“It’s me Zan.”

“Come in – since when do you knock?”

“I’ve kinda learned that here I guess – so how are you today? How was your first night on Earth?”

“Strange – in everything – what is it?”

“Liz and me are having breakfast in the garden – you wanna join?”

“Yes I guess, I’ll get ready and join you then okay?”

“Okay – listen Rath I’ve to talk to you again sometime.”

“About what?”

Rath was alarmed – please no more talks about Liz Parker – how was he supposed to keep his mouth shut?

“About you know who.”

Damn – now what.

“Uh – okay later then.”

“Yep – I’m going to wake Vilandra have you talked to her?”

“Nope she won’t even open the door, so good luck.”

“Thanks.”

This was getting better and better.

*****************
When Zan tried to open the door it was locked.

“Vil’ it’s me please open the door, I have to talk to you.”

“Go away!”

The next second he could hear her shrieking, thinking that she might be harmed he opened the door was his power and ran inside. Vilandra was standing in her bathroom wet from top to bottom – fuming over something.

“What is it? What did you do?”

“This isn’t tolerable – this is hell, a nightmare. I want to go home at once or at least get to me a place where they have servants.”

“Well good luck, they don’t usually have people like that here – so what did you do? Forgot to get undressed before taking a shower?”

“No I wanted to wash my face but this stupid thing wasn’t moving at all and then when it finally moved I got all splashed.”

“You’ve got to be more careful Vil’. Why don’ you get ready and join Rath, Liz and me in the garden for breakfast.”

“No way – I’m not gonna eat with a civilian.”

So he had tried – he had been patient enough but this was it.

“Well okay then don’t. We’re leaving for the city in two hours and you’ll join us and don’t even think of complaining sister, this is an order. If you don’t want to eat fine, then don’t but you won’t complain. Got it? One word and you’ll regret it. So either you’ll eat something with us now or you’ll have to wait until we eat lunch. I mean you could of course buy something in the city but that would require contact with civilians – so think about it.”

And with that he was gone. Passing Rath who just leaving his room without a word.
What a pleasant morning. His mood of course changed the second he could see Liz decorating the table in the garden.

*****************
It hadn’t been one of the greatest nights for Liz Parker. She was still tired because too much was on her mind to get a good nights sleep. Sensing that somebody was watching her she turned around and was faced with Zan right behind him Rath.

“Good morning you two – how are you?”

“Good morning – fine.”

“Sit down – I’ll bring the coffee right away.”

While she was gone Zan and Rath sat down.

“So what is all of this?”

“Bagels, bread, toast, eggs, cheese everything is good if you put that on it…”

He was pointing at the Tabasco bottle in front of them. Of course Vilandra didn’t join them and so Liz, Zan and Rath enjoyed their breakfast without her. Liz got the chance to ask Rath some questions while Zan was pondering over something.

**************

Part 23

The drive to the city was really unpleasant, Zan was angry with his sister Vil’ who was refusing to talk and Michael aka Rath was pondering. So Liz switched on her Radio and started silently humming to the music. She never thought she would think that but she wanted the last week back – only her and Zan – although he had acted like a jerk he at least had talked to her.

“So are you three always this talkative or is there a reason?”

She finally asked, annoyed by this silence. All she received were three glances all saying the same thing ‘shut up’.

“Okay listen guys, I know that Vilandra is refusing to tell me but when ever you have the need to talk don’t hold back. As you’re also refusing to tell me or the other two what we should call you in public because I can promise you that we won’t call you Vilandra I’ll refer to you as the ‘Ice Princess’ so deal with it. Michael and Max we’ll now get you each a tux for the wedding on Saturday. Miss Ice Princess doesn’t talk so I assume that she either has a dress to wear or she won’t join. For lunch we’re gonna meet with Alex and Maria. Is that fine with you?”

Michael and Max had a hard time to suppress their smirks – Vilandra was really pissed again. Michael then was the one who dared to say something.

“That’s fine with me Liz, thank you. So Za…eh Max told me that this wedding thing is really important for you humans…it will be an honour to be there.”

“That’s nice of you to say that Michael yeah it is important because they’re going to promise to love each other forever.”

“How pathetic.”

Vilandra hissed and kept on glancing out of the window in the most arrogant way possible.

“Wow so you do speak.”

It had been impossible for Liz to not say that last comment.

“It might sound pathetic true even some humans think that but I think it’s wonderful. It’s a gift to find someone to love and that loves you back…”

“I’m starting to wonder why you’re still alone….no wait I know.”

Vilandra murmured loud enough that it could be heard by everybody in the car. Zan saw the hurt look on Liz’ face…that had been impudent with the only aim to hurt Liz. He was hoping that she wouldn’t let it get to her.

Until they got to their destination Rath tried to save the rest of the day by asking Liz one question after the other hoping Vilandra would be quiet.
Arriving at the mall Liz parked the car and they all got out.

“Why don’t you go ahead I’ll be right behind I just have to do something.”

Liz informed them all turning around and searching in her bag for her cell phone. Just when she started dialing she noticed Zan standing in front of her.

“Max – you what…”

“Liz before you say anything I wanted to apologize for my bitch of a sister.”

“You don’t have to apologize for her although the intention is very nice but I can deal with it – I’ll just call Maria and follow you then so go ahead.”

“Are you sure?”

“Definitely.”

“Okay.”

*****************
Maria was just finishing her shift at the restaurant she was jobbing at when her phone rang.

“Please let it be my knight in shining armour if not I’m hanging up – what is it Liz?”

“Geez what happened to you today?”

“I just figured that this world is harsh and unfair.”

“Again? But I can tell you my day was even worse I have the devil in person here with me Maria you’ve to come as soon as possible or I won’t take any responsibility for anything that might happen.”

“That bad?”

“You’ve no idea – Maria please?”

“Well let’s consider – I got up this morning at 5.30 to get here and serve unfriendly guests for a minimum wage an hour, I’m tired and dirty and…”

“…you could help me finding a tux for Max and Michael aka Rath.”

There was a small pause.

“I can be there in 30 Minutes.”

“I love you girl.”

“yeah and you owe me, please just don’t do anything you might regret later, help is on the way.”

“Thanks.”

What a luck she just lived three streets away from Cambridge Mall and she was home in less than two minutes.

*****************
“I can’t believe that I’m doing this.”

Vilandra inspected the place which was full with civilians. Was that a human market place? And she was in the middle of it – in the middle of a damn planet with a brother who was ordering her around and a friend who was more a friend of her brother than her. She had always been able to rely on them and now they were acting like jerks.
Her stomach was rumbling – just great and her brother had heard it. Surprisingly he wasn’t looking at her with anger but with something she could only describe as pity. That only made her more angrier – she could live with that feeling she knew it.

They entered a shop selling only tuxes and suits. One man came straight at them.

“Hi how are you my name is Jeffrey, may I help you?”

Liz took one more step, smiled and said.

“Yes hi, we need a tux for a wedding for those two handsome guys.”

Handsome? Did she just hear that right? This girl had dares to call her brother handsome? Okay he was, nothing against that but how dare she? Zan and Rath only smirked at each other after hearing that comment and waited to be led away.
Just great now they were standing there alone. Another man walked up to her.

“May I offer you something to drink? Coffee? Water?”

Even before Vilandra had the chance to answer Liz said that it would be very kind to get two water. On Antar it was natural to be served with anything you wanted if you belonged to the royal family so why was this Liz-person so kind? Oh right she wasn’t a royalty – then realization hit Vilandra here on Earth she wasn’t one either – at least not in the moment.

*****************
Michael left his dressing room when Maria entered the shop, seeing him, walking up to him and pinching his cheek.

“Whoo spaceboy that looks really nice on you.”

He blushed, why had this Maria-girl always something to say about the way he was wearing his clothes and hair and everything. She was so different form Liz – definitely more talkative and a lot more lively.

“Yes I have to concede with your girlfriend there that tux suits you just fine.”

Jeffrey nodded.

“Uhm she’s not my girlfriend.”

“Sorry, nevertheless the lady is right the tux is perfect. You wanna take it?”

Michael took in his reflection in the mirror, this was new to him, trousers on Antar weren’t that tight so he felt as if he would expose his body.

“What do you think Liz?”

“I like it they’re right. Take it.”

He knew that there was no way in asking Vilandra because she wouldn’t give him an answer. She was sipping at a glass of water with boredom written all over her face. What was he supposed to do to make her change her attitude? But that wasn’t the reason he was here one part of the reason he was here was just joining him wearing a tux himself. Michael really had to be blind to not recognize Liz’ eyes sparkling when she saw Max in his tux. The fact that also Maria had recognized it and didn’t say anything was more surprising to him. Maybe he should talk to her after all she was a human girl and as much as he knew Liz’ best friend.

“Michael you look great.”

His best friend commented his looks.

“Well look at yourself Max – very elegant if I may say so.”

“You may – so how do you like it girls?”

“Geez if I would have a pen and paper I would definitely give you a 10+.”

Maria nodded with enthusiasm. Liz was speechless – he looked stunning.

“10? What do you mean by that?”

That question from Max and Michael brought her back into reality.

“Don’t take her too serious guys – Max you look fine – really – take it.”

And with that the decision was made. Both men changed back into their clothes, they paid for everything after finding also shoes and everything they needed and it was time to get to the food court where Alex was already waiting.

**************

Part 25

“Alex – hey – I hope you haven’t been waiting too long.”

Liz hugged him.

“No problem Lizzie, hey Maria, Max.”

“Hey Alex.”

Alex knew that Max was saying something but he really didn’t hear anything because in the moment he was able to do only one thing and that was staring at the most beautiful woman he had ever seen in his whole life. Who was she? Right – sister – Max had said something like that right? But what was her name? Did Max say a name?

“Uhm – Alex Whitman – hi.”

Michael shook his hand. Max’ sister though refused to do or say anything – bad day as it seemed.

“So I take it you’re also from Antar…welcome to Earth then, I hope you’ll have a nice stay. So shall we get something to eat?”

“Go on Alex you seem a lot hungrier than we do…”

Liz sat down at one table and started thinking about what she would eat.

“…well that’s not entirely accurate Liz, I think my sister is just as hungry as Alex, so take her with you Alex and good luck.”

Now why was Max laughing. Alex saw the look on his sister’s face – what was wrong with her.

“Okay so shall we?”

Reluctantly Vilandra followed this weird guy. He was explaining to her what the different meals meant and kept on repeating himself that she should just tell him what she wanted.

”So what will it be? By the way I’m sorry but I didn’t get your name – what was it again?”

“It doesn’t matter.”

So after all she could talk he had started to doubt that. He tried to ignore the harsh note in her comment.

“So have you made your decision?”

Instead of answering his question she just pointed at something Chinese and left him standing there dumbstruck.

*****************
“So you really think this was a good idea to send her with Alex?”

Liz asked Max who was again taking in everything going on around him. Hearing her question he started chuckling.

“Don’t worry Liz, Alex is a great guy he was able to handle me and I’m sure sooner or later he’ll also get through to Vilandra.”

“Let’s hope so, so why don’t we get something? Maria, Michael is that okay?”

“Sure go ahead.”

*****************
Michael was grateful that Liz and Max finally left the table to get something to eat that gave him the opportunity to talk to Maria.

“So you’re Liz’ best friend right?”

“Yes?!”

Now where was he heading?

“I was wondering if you can tell me what happened between Liz and Max the last week?”

“Why? Was there something supposed to happen?”

“Uhm…no I was just wondering, I mean he’s my best friend and…just curious.”

“Oh well, I can tell you that there’s definitely something going on between the two of them, that’s for sure.”

“Are you sure?”

“Just look at them will you? How they’re looking at each other and acting around each other – let me tell you something – they were made for each other.”

What? How could she know? Or was that just a saying he didn’t know of?

“What do you mean they were made for each other?”

“Duh – Michael – I don’t know that much about Antar and your culture but let me tell you no matter where they’re from they belong together. I mean look at him he came here being a jerk and all, giving Liz a hard time and now he’s even smiling from time to time. Now think about what she could do to him if they were together. It’s just so romantic!”

Okay so this would definitely be harder than expected. Maria seemed to be one of those humans who really lived according to their emotions so he wasn’t sure if she really knew for a fact that Max and Liz were each other’s destiny or if she only believed it.

Meanwhile Vilandra had made her way back to the table, followed by a slightly angry Alex Whitman.

“Well I think it’s our turn c’mon Michael.”

Maria took him by her hand which surprised him a lot and dragged him behind her to get some lunch.

*****************
Alex was pissed and confused – she had just left him standing there in line, expecting him to pay – okay he was a gentleman and he would have done it anyway but he had the feeling that this strange woman took it not only for granted that he did it she had expected him to do that.

“Here you’re bon appetite.”

Maybe she would say ‘Thank you ‘ now, maybe she just had too much on her mind. Well – no definitely not.

“You know you could say thank you.”

She glanced at him – bored.

“I don’t know how you do it on Antar but here on Earth if someone invites you for lunch we say thank you. So it would be courtesy to say that.”

Last chance here lady – no response. Alex gave up and started eating, trying not to watch her. She took a small bite liking it because she took another one.

Max and Liz finally joined them.

“So how do you like it?”

Max asked his sister. If looks could kill!!!!
Liz saw the disappointment on his face that Vilandra refused to say a word, to at least try to be a little more friendlier. On instinct she put her hand on his and squeezed it – not knowing which consequences this small gesture might have.
For Max this gentleness was unusual and so he didn’t know what to do. Her skin felt so soft and this whole thing it felt so right – how wanted to feel more of her. Glancing at her hand and then into her eyes his throat went dry and he felt like burning up inside. What was happening to him?
Liz didn’t know how but somehow she could feel the confusion coming right from Max and she also made out his sudden indisposition so she quickly tore her hand away and whispered

“Sorry.”

Although he had been confused by her touch he now missed it even more and that feeling was a lot worse than his bewilderment.

“No it’s okay, really.”

They exchanged knowing smiles which didn’t go unnoticed by Alex and Vilandra. Alex was surprised by their sudden closeness and gentleness when they were acting around each other and Vilandra was disgusted by the fact that her brother really liked that girl and that he allowed her to touch him. What was it with humans and their need to touch and feel? This was all so pathetic and overvalued.

**************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:14:13 AM
Part 26

It was Friday and everybody was getting ready for the parties. Alex would fetch Max and Michael for Kyle’s bachelors party - the three of them had spent some time during the last days and Alex had finally decided that those two Antarians were two great guys if you got to know them.
Vilandra hadn’t changed a bit she was talking from time to time but most of the time she was just acting like a bitch trying her best to annoy everyone. Of course Either the girls nor the guys let this behaviour get to them instead they just started ignoring her.

“Last chance Ice Princess if you promise to behave you can join us if not I prefer you staying here.”

Liz informed Vilandra who was sitting in her room sulking.
It wasn’t like she didn’t want to join Maria and Liz – she had to admit that she envied them a bit. There was no one on Antar she felt so close with – nobody to talk to – but this role was already so much a part of her that it would be even harder for her to stop acting like it.
But what surprised her the most was the enormous part of patience Liz was displaying. No matter how often Vilandra insulted her or tried to hurt her feelings intentionally she always gave her another chance. And even now Vilandra felt another one of those chances coming. Liz was an amazing person.

“Listen Vilandra – I know that you hate it here but if you would just give us a chance we could prove to you that it’s not that bad at all – but you have to open up and be a little more sociable. So think about it…”

Getting no reply Liz got up – she was slowly giving up on Vilandra – what was she supposed to do? She had tried everything – there was no way in getting through to her she was as stubborn as possible.

“Why are you doing this Liz?”

Astonished Liz turned around looking straight into the woman’s eyes who was so desperately trying to hate everything on Earth.

“Doing what?”

“That…being so friendly although I’m like I am?”

“I think that you’ve your reasons but besides that I also hope to get through to you somehow. I know how I would feel if my father would send be away to another galaxy and everything – I guess you’re angry at him and you are afraid. But Vilandra there’s nothing you really have to be afraid about. Your brother is here who loves you dearly and your friend is here who’s always protecting you and I can promise you that neither Alex nor Maria or I have bad intentions.”

“I…I…am not used to be depending on others and you’re so different and I think I even envy you.”

“Envy me? Why?”

“Because of what you are…you are smart and have your own opinion you make your own decisions, that’s something I was never allowed to do. And you have friends you talk to. Where I come from everything is so shallow – I realized that while those last days.”

“I don’t know what to say about that only that if you would give me and Maria a chance we could be friends – so why don’t you get ready for the party and join us? It will be a lot of fun.”

“And you wouldn’t mind?”

“Would I be asking if I did? Get ready okay?”

Vilandra nodded and started getting ready.

*****************
What both girls didn’t know was the fact that Max was standing in front of the door hearing every word being said. It was really amazing how much this one human had changed not only him and his friend – no she finally had also worked her magic on his sister which wasn’t an easy job. Nearly two weeks on this planet and he was a new person. Him and Michael had talked again about Liz and Michael had assured him that it was okay what was going on between him and Liz and that the king would surely approve of his son’s new experiences. After all that was the reason he was sent here. But was that true? Max still hadn’t talked to Liz about his feelings – this was still so new so unusual to everything he had learned on his home planet.
He could hear the door opening and was faced with Liz.

“Hey Max – what are you doing here?”

“I wanted to talk to Vilandra about this party later – trying to convince her to join you but I think you already did a good job in that.”

“Well yeah I guess we had a break through here she’ll come with us.”

She wanted to leave him when she heard him calling her name.

“Yeah?”

“Thank you – for everything.”

She nodded smiling and left him.

*****************
“So guys what do you expect from this party?”

Alex asked Max and Michael when they entered the club which had been rented for the party.

“Uhm I don’t know, what do you usually do at those parties?”

“Having fun so let’s go.”

Well if Alex had only known that Anatrians had a really big problem with holding human alcohol. After one sip of beer both were a full as one can be. Good thing was that many of Kyles friends arrived drunken at the party so there was no big difference. When the striptease dancer appeared Max and Michael couldn’t believe their eyes.

“Al’…please t…tell me that I am not dreamin’ this girl issss naked? Right?”

“Yeah Max she is naked you’re not dreaming don’t you have something like striptease on Antar?”

“Uhm no but I’ll ma…make sure to introduce it asap.”

Oh boy…that was really a lot of fun. He had never seen those two as loose and easy. The only fear he had was that somehow somebody could find out their real identity. After all this party was all about Kyle and not about some ‘aliens’.
When Michael was busy with chatting with some of Kyle’s friends Alex took the chance to talk to Max about his sister.

“So Max what is the problem with your sister? Why is she so cold?”

Max was sitting next to him leaning back in his chair eyes closed.

“She’s a bitch always has been but I love her…she doesn’t want to be here but our father wants her so as she can’t piss him off we’re the scapegoats. It’s that easy. Why?”

“I was just wondering and what is that about you and Liz? I’ve been watching you two is there something I should know?”

Max opened his eyes, although he was drunk he didn’t miss the concern in Alex’ voice.

“Listen Alex I know that Liz is important to you and you can believe me that she’s that also to me. It’s strange though I have never felt this way I always thought that Antarians just didn’t have the foundation for feelings now I suspect that it’s just our education which prevents us from feeling. Staying here on Earth though has awakened that in me or better Liz did.”

“So have you told her your feelings?”

“No – I’m afraid that she might laugh at me.”

“Max buddy let me tell you something, Liz would never laugh at you so go for it. Tell her what you feel and what you think. She has a right to know what’s going on.”

“The…the prob…problem is that I don’t what’s going on.”

Max was looking at Alex. To Alex he seemed like a five year old who was very confused. When he wanted to take another sip Alex took the glass from Max.

”I think you had enough buddy – so will you tell her?”

“Yes yes I will, I will tell her.”

Suddenly Max stood up proclaiming his plan to tell Liz, then from one second to the other he sat down again.

“But not now, I feel a bit dizzy.”

This guy was hilarious, Alex could only hope that Liz would be at home when he brought Michael and Max back because he was definitely not able to handle both of them.

“You think your sister would grill me if I asked her out on a date when she gets out of her bad mood? Would that be okay with you?”

“Dude, you really like torturing yourself don’t you. My sister is always in a bad mood, don’t expect her to be that different on one of her good days but go ahead. Liz got through to her just this evening so maybe you’ll be lucky.”

**************

Part 27

Meanwhile the girls also had their fun at the other party. Vilandra couldn’t believe that one could really have that much fun. During their drive there Maria and Liz had come up with some name suggestions for her and they had settled on Isabelle. She really liked that name of course it took some time getting used to but after hearing her being called that by everybody at the party she really was Isabelle.

“So Isabelle how do you like it?”

Maria sat down next to her. She was really overwhelmed by all of this.

“It’s really fascinating, I never thought that it could be that much fun.”

“That’s great really. I hope that Michael and Max are also having fun.”

“I think they do I just hope that nothing will happen.”

“Oh don’t worry, Alex is with them he might be weird but he’s never irresponsible. So that friend of yours what is he like?”

“Rath…um Michael? Why do you wanna know? Are you interested in him?”

“I would be lying if I said no – he’s cute he really is…he’s single isn’t he? I don’t want to destroy any serious relationship on Antar.”

“You don’t that much about us do you? He wouldn’t be here if he was bonded. So there’s nobody back on Antar. I even have the slight suspicion that he is happy to be here because as much as I know his next check up would be next week if he was on Antar.”

“Oh really? How about you and your brother? Have you been checked up?”

“Yes sure the first time you get this done is when you’re born and then in again in irregular intervals until your match is found.”

“I can’t believe to spend the rest of your life with someone you don’t love.”

“It’s not about love on Antar Maria, the only purpose is to conceive a child and that’s it.”

“Wow…and you could do that?”

“You’ve no other choice.”

“Okay then why does Michael always ask me about Max and Liz if I have watched them, if there’s something going on between them? If Liz has feelings for him.”

“He does? That’s strange…have you asked him why he wants to know?”

“Of course but he always says that he’s just curious. I don’t know him that well and that’s why I’m asking.”

“I’m sorry but I can’t help you here maybe I should ask Max himself.”

In that moment Liz decided to appear again.

“Hey you girls, c’mon the fun is just starting. Vicky’s surprise is here.”

“What surprise?”

Neither Liz nor Maria said anything they just took each a hand of her and dragged her behind them towards the other women.

Vilandra was excited about what would happen next. She was able to feel the excitement in the air. The light went out suddenly, then you could hear a tune – music the light went on and in the middle of the room there was a man. All the women were shrieking and laughing.

Liz was watching Isabelle closely to make sure that she wouldn’t suffer a heart attack. She was standing there eyes wide open and when recognizing that the guy intention of undressing she shrieked and laughed and…just couldn’t believe her eyes.

“Oh my…Liz why is he doing that?”

“It’s fun Isabelle…just enjoy okay?”

And she did, never in her life had she laughed that much. It was late when Liz, Maria and Isabelle went home. Just when Liz had parked the car Alex’ car could be heard.
He parked his car and got out.

“Uhm ladies…I could need a little help here!”

“What did you do?”

“Nothing, they took one little sip of beer and that’s it.”

The girls could see Max opening the door, slowly getting up, tottering.

“Hey ya there…ladies!”

It was hard not to laugh. Max was smiling form one ear to the other, while Michael had a really hard time getting out of the car. Maria took her chance, ran to the car and helped him getting out.

“C’mon spaceboy, let me help you.”

“Maria, hey…how are you?”

“Just fine.”

Maria was chuckling, shaking her head. He was really a cutie.

“you know you should go to bed Michael.”

“Noooo…I don’t wanna…I’m not tired.”

Michael was whining and reminding Maria of a small boy – so adorable and that with only one sip of beer. Something to keep in mind.

“I think I better get him in Liz.”

“Thanks I think I’m going to take care of that drunken specimen here – thanks Alex for bringing them and taking care of them.”

“No problem, see you tomorrow – good night everyone.”

“Liiiiiiiiz…heeey…”

Max hugged her out of nowhere.

“Hey Max, What’s up?”

“Nothin’ jjjust great.”

“Great why don’t I get you in?”

“No, wanna know what I wanna do? I wanna take a walk.”

“Max it’s in the middle of the night, not exactly the best time to take a walk.”

“C’mon I wanna.”

And with that he took her hand and started walking towards the park which wasn’t that far away.
Liz turned around telling Isabelle to get in and that they shouldn’t wait, she could handle it.

*****************
Max was quiet now and Liz was a bit confused. Drunken people were not her favourites to deal with.

“May don’t you want to go back? Tomorrow is the wedding and it will also get late then.”

“No I don’t want to…I…I have to tell you something…”

He suddenly turned around, taking also her other hand in his, looking down in her doe brown eyes.

“I…I dunno how to say that but there’s a lot of things going on in my head in the moment and somehow it all has to do with you.”

“Max…I don’t…”

“Shshsh…please don’t interrupt me, it’s hard for me anyway.”

How was he supposed to say that?

“Liz I think I might feel something for you, I’m not sure because this is really new for me. I enjoy being around you and you make me happy, something I’ve never experienced in my life. You’ve changed me and your influence on me is enormous although we only know each other for two weeks. I…I feel drawn to you and …and I think if I would be human I would like to…how do you call it…date you…I’m even sure that I may fall in love with you.”

He was still glancing into her eyes. Liz didn’t know what to say…so her feelings weren’t one-sided. What now?

“Max…I really don’t know what to say…that…wow…”

“I’ve made a fool out of myself right?”

He let go of her hands and started walking away from her.

“No…no Max…please stop.”

She stopped him.

“Then what…why do I have these feelings for you Liz Parker? I’m not supposed to have them. You’re not even antarian…”

Max had lifted his right hand, stroking her cheek with his thumb.

“…and I’m not only antarian but also the crown prince of a whole Planet. My father would so disapprove of this…I’m not supposed to feel, somewhere at home there’s a mate waiting for me but after knowing you how can I bond with someone, someone who doesn’t make me feel like I do for you. Nobody can ever be you Liz – do you know what you’re doing to me?”

“Max I can say that I’m sorry but I’m not and you’re not the only one who is confused…I’ve also feelings for you…”

His thumb slowly drifted down to her lips, touching them slightly. His heart was beating faster, his breath shallow. Slowly bending down he touched his lips to hers. It was like fireworks at the first touch. Their lips were burning with passion. The kiss was gentle and slow, their tongues dancing their own dance.
Breath?! Breath! Who needed breath anyway?!
Breaking the connection involuntarily, forehead on forehead, watching the other.

“And what now Liz Parker?”

“I don’t know.”

*************

Part 28

Maria had a hard time getting a drunken oversized baby into the house.

“C’mon Michael step by step – there you go, that’s good…no…no we’re not going into the kitchen…right…Michael turn right…good boy. Now let me get this door open.”

So this really wasn’t that easy but she made it, now he was sitting on his bed.

“What kind of a friend am I?”

“’Cuse me?”

Maria started untying his shoes and getting them off while he was sitting there as limp as a wet sack.

“I’m asking you Maria DeLuca what kind of friend am I? Have you ever spied on Liz?”

And with that he looked her straight in the eyes. Now what was he talking about. She slowly got up from the floor and sat down net to him.

“What are you talking about Michael? You’re Max’ best friend o, I don’t know…”

“Wanna know why I’m here? I’ll tell you why I’M here…I am nnnot here as a friend…well okay that’s also a reason but…but the main reason is to spy on my best friend…now who would do that to a friend?”

“I’m sure that there’s a reason for it…why are you spying on him anyway?”

“His father sent me here and…and…”

He got up and started pacing, his head was spinning but he didn’t feel like sitting.

“…and now I’m here to make sure that he falls in love with Liz…or not…I don’t even know what I’m supposed to do with them. I mean how come in the first place that she is his match for 100% she’s not even antarian and then why can’t he just get his mate on Antar? Why do I have a king that wants to change his rules and why does he treat his own son like guinea pig?”

Then it suddenly hut him that he had just spilled out the big secret about the whole plan. Looking at Maria he recognized the confused look on her face.

“Maria you have to promise me that you’ll not talk to anyone about this – promise.”

“I promise, I promise it’s just I knew that they were each others destiny but how is that possible? And does Mr Parker know? And geez I’ve got so many questions.”

“That I can’t answer unfortunately so what am I gonna do? I feel like, like a scumbag how could I do that? If Zan finds out he’ll never talk to me…”

“Don’t worry I think that everything will be just fine. Now tell me just one thing, what will happen if they fall in love and what if not?”

“If they fall in love the king hopes that Liz will accompany Zan to follow him back to Antar and be the future queen, if not…nothing will happen, Zan will return nevertheless get bonded with the next best match and that’s it…”

Suddenly he got up again, whining…

“…but he’s already developing feelings for her and oh geez this is so hopeless. He already told me that he’ll miss this when getting bonded…”

“So he doesn’t know that his father would approve of this relationship?”

That made Michael stop pacing and shaking his head ‘no’.

“So why don’t you talk to him, telling him that he should figure out what his father would think.”

“I don’t think that Zan would do that – he’s too proud and he would never question his father’s intentions – nobody does that - …”

“…but he doesn’t know his father’s intentions Michael so…talk to him…but I think you better get to bed now okay? Well figure something out and I promise to keep my big mouth shut. I know that this sounds unbelievable but I know when to keep quiet.”

She stood up and they stood face to face.

“You know what Maria DeLuca? You’re a really decent person and Liz is lucky to have a friend like you.”

“Well let me tell you Michael or Rath, Zan is also lucky to have such a good friend like you – so good night.”

“Good night, se you…uhm later.”

“Yeah later…”

Not exactly knowing what to do she hugged him and then left the room. Now this was really interesting so Max and Liz were each others destiny and the king wanted to some how test if they would get together nevertheless. The romantic in her of course started wondering if her destiny was also out there somewhere and just waiting for her.

*****************
Oh boy – Max slowly turned around in his bed, the sun was already up outside and his head was acing like hell. What had he done? Closing his eyes again he concentrated and slowly the pain was easing away. When did he get into his bed? The last night was more like a cloud – he remembered getting to a club and then – nothing. Oh well the party couldn’t have been that good if he remembered nothing of it. He decided to get up and eat something.

“Good morning sleepyhead.”

Liz smiled at him and kissed him on the cheek when she also entered the kitchen. Now this was strange.

“Good morning.”

She kept on smiling and he didn’t know what got her into this good mood.

“Uhm Liz?”

“Yeah?”

“Did…did something happen yesterday that got you into this good mood?”

“What do you mean?”

Liz had a bad feeling now about this question, something wasn’t right.

“I …I was just wondering because I can’t remember anything.”

Oh no!

“What do you mean? You can’t remember anything?”

“I remember being fetched by Alex, getting there, drinking some something and then there’s a gap and the first thing I remember again is waking up here. So did something happen that I should know about?”

“Uhm…no…no as much as I know you had a great time at the party, came back and went straight to bed…and…oh my god…”

she took a look at the watch searching desperately for an excuse to get away from him…

“It’s already so late I’ve to go, see you later Max.”

And why did he have the feeling that she was lying to him? Something wasn’t right, something had happened. Nobody changed his or her attitude in just a matter of seconds that rapidly. Not even humans!

*************
Part 29

Unfortunately he didn’t get the chance to talk to her until the wedding. Michael, Isabelle and him were seated in the back of the church which was nearly full. Maria and Liz sat in the second row, chatting away. Although everything around him was new he only had eyes for Liz. She looked beautiful wearing a dark blue dress, which hugged her figure at the right places. Thin straps were holding the dress which ended at mid thigh. She had her hair up and only a few strands were hanging lose framing her beautiful face.
His sister was again very quiet but had a definitely friendlier look on her face than the days before.
Michael was sitting there, staring into space.

“Hey, what’s the matter with you?”

He shook him out of his trance.

“I have to talk to you Max.”

“About what?”

“About yesterday…do you remember anything that happened yesterday?”

“No, do you?”

“Thank god I thought it was me, I’ve forgotten about everything that happened at the party.”

“Don’t worry bro’ Liz told me that we had a lot of fun so it can’t be that bad.”

“But what if I talked about something I shouldn’t have?”

“If you don’t have any secrets then there’s nothing to worry about or do you?”

“Do I what?”

“Have any secrets?”

“No of course not.”

Okay now this had been a lie and both knew it. He had reacted too fast too harsh. It had always been like that. Zan always knew when Rath was lying and vice versa.
Of course this gave him something to think about what reason would his friend have to keep something secret.
Michael felt that his friend was thinking about what he just had said.

“Listen Za…uhm Max, don’t think about it okay? And please don’t ask me, everything is fine and…so…so just don’t worry okay?”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, c’mon this is me…you know me!”

“Yeah and that’s why I don’t believe you.”

In that moment the music started and everybody got up, looking at the door.

*****************
Vilandra saw Vicky entering the church in a beautiful white dress and she wished nothing more than to also be able to one day actually ‘marry’ someone. She could see Kyle’s shining eyes while he was watching her taking one step after another. Both of them seemed so happy – this is what love had to look like. Oh how she wanted to experience this wonder as well. It made her a little bit melancholic that she would never experience something like that.

After the ceremony everybody got out and congratulated them.

“Congratulations Vicky and Kyle this was a really nice wedding you both can be so happy to have found each other – you don’t know how honoured I feel that I was allowed to be a part of it.”

She shook their hands. Kyle smiled at her.

“Thank you Isabelle it’s also nice that you’re here and we hope that you’ll also enjoy the rest of the day…oh and I’m also happy that you finally decided to talk to us.”

But he was smiling as he said that and Isabelle didn’t feel offended or anything like that. After her it was Michael and Max’ turn.

She could see Liz, Maria and Alex standing a little way away and walked towards them. Maria was blowing her nose.

“Oh my god that was so romantic…”

Alex and Liz were both trying hard not to laugh when Maria turned to Alex throwing her arms around his neck starting to cry again.

“Admit it A…Alex…it…it was sooooo stunningly beautiful…”

Alex was only nodding his head, stroking Maria’s back and looking at Liz desperately.

“Everything okay with her?”

Isabelle asked Liz when she finally got to them.

“Yeah, Maria is rather weepy…don’t worry…she’ll stop eventually.”

“Then why is she crying?”

Hearing that question Maria let go of Alex and turned around again.

“Because it was so romantic, I’m surrounded by happy couples and people who are destined for each other…isn’t that beautiful Isabelle? Admit it – it just makes you cry.”

Liz and Isabelle looked at each other with big eyes, smirking. Luckily Max and Michael finally approached them.

“Are you alright Maria?”

Max was wondering, seeing her red, puffy eyes.

“You don’t even wanna know.”

Liz commented taking his hand and dragging him behind her toward the hotel across the street in which garden the celebration would go on. Max was a bit startled by this forwardness first but he definitely didn’t mind. In fact he was happy that Liz seemed normal again.

*****************
Alex, Michael, Maria and Isabelle wanted to follow the two but Maria held Michael back.

”You two go ahead I’ve to talk to Michael alone for a second.”

Alex and Isabelle were a bit astonished but kept on walking nevertheless.
Michael was more than that he was terrified. What if had done something yesterday that he would regret now? He really had a bad feeling.

“So what are we going to do with Liz and Max? I mean…I had the whole night thinking about it and I…”

“Wait a minute, what are you talking about Maria?”

He interrupted her…the bad feel getting even worse.

“You know…Zan’s destiny and Liz’…may I remind you that you told me last night?”

“OH SHIT! I did? How could I do that…urh…damn…oh no…you didn’t tell anyone did you?”

“Michael, we talked about that already and I promised you not to tell anyone…duh…so back to my question what are we going to do with them?”

“You will keep your finger out of this Maria. It was my order to watch them, we don’t do anything. Either they find each other alone or they don’t.”

“Excuse me you’re talking about my best friend here and I will not let you or Zan get here from another planet, break her heart and leave again…no way spaceboy!”

Now this was perfect out of everybody he had talked to about this it had to be Maria – or perhaps he had told someone else also?! How was he supposed to know? Damn it!

“Listen Maria, you won’t tell Liz or anybody and you won’t interfere. This is too important. Please if the king or Mr Parker find out that I talked about it I’ll get into trouble and I don’t want to get into trouble. I’m Max’ best friend and he needs me here and not on Antar okay?”

Maria saw the seriousness in his eyes.

“Okay, okay…but a little matchmaking on my side is fine, isn’t it? I mean it would be too obvious if I wouldn’t even try. Liz knows me and she knows that I would love to see her and Max together so if I stop kidding her about it she’ll know that something isn’t right.”

“Just behave normal okay?”

“Okay but you owe me – big!”

*************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:16:10 AM
Part 30

Liz and Max were really enjoying the whole party.

“So how did you like it? The ceremony I mean?”

“Interesting I think I can understand now why it’s such a big thing for you. I think even my sister was moved by it.”

“So would that be something to consider? I mean if you had a choice?”

“You mean instead of the bonding ceremony? I don’t think so.”

“Any if you would marry a human?”

Liz was watching him, she had to try it. He had said he couldn’t remember anything from last night, well she did. She remembered every word he had said and so she knew that the feelings were still there – he would just never admit it as sober as he was.

“Antarian people don’t marry humans, that’s just not possible.”

“Why not? I mean…I…”

“Liz, I have told you about the matching thing right? So humans and Antarians don’t fit, their genes are totally different…and…”

“…I know that Max but let’s assume somehow someone from Antar would really develop feelings for a human and he or she wanted to marry this person…”

“My father would never allow that.”

Max interrupted Liz’ train of thought. Why did she come up with this topic anyway? It was hard enough to not tell her what was going on with him and besides that he had a new problem. Something wasn’t right with Rath. Ever since he came here he had had that feeling that Rath was keeping something from him.

“How do you know that Max? I mean perhaps your father would, have you ever talked to him about that?”

“There has never been a reason for it. Please just stop Liz okay? I mean I really appreciate you and that’s a lot considering my former attitude but we both know that Earth and Antar are as different as can be…please understand that I don’t want to talk about it anymore okay?”

Liz only nodded her head, so this would be harder than expected after all he was still very stubborn. They kept on talking about different stuff while they were eating.

*****************
Michael had just been talking to Alex when Max appeared on his side and he really didn’t like his expression. Damn it.

“You and me…we have to talk.”

Max only hissed into his ear, grabbed his arm and dragged him a little bit away from the party.

“Max what is it you can’t just…”

“Shut up Rath. I want to know and I want to know now. What is wrong with you?”

“Nothing is wrong with me Zan…why are you asking?”

“Don’t you dare lying to me. I’ve known you for all my life and you and me, we both know that you are not telling me the truth. So tell me, what is it?”

“Zan…I…I can’t.”

“So you admit at least that you do have a secret?”

“Yes…yes I do but it’s nothing to worry about. Promise!”

“Okay…”

Running his fingers trough his hair Zan started pondering and pacing in front of Rath who got more nervous by the second. What was he supposed to do? Zan was his best friend, the only person he could rely on and…and now Zan stood again in front him staring at him.

“I may repeat myself but I want to know Rath. I want to know everything.”

“Zan as much as I want to I can’t I have strict orders…”

“So my father is behind all of this? Are you telling me that my father gave you orders to spy on me? You - my best friend is spying on me?”

The last sentence had been a little bit louder.

“You out of all people! So why are you spying on me Rath? And you better tell me the whole truth or you will regret to ever have lived.”

Now this was great…suddenly Mr Parker was standing next to them.

“Leave him alone Zan, he isn’t the one to be blamed.”

“So you knew? What about Liz? And Vilandra?”

Just perfect Zan felt betrayed and disappointed. Were they all just playing a little game with him?

“Liz knows nothing about this but why don’t we wait until your father is here, I think it would only be fair to both of you to have us all here to explain what’s going on okay?”

“My father is coming?”

Now this was really a surprise – why would his father come to Earth? This wasn’t good.

“I will contact him immediately but until then I would like to see you enjoying the wedding and not giving Rath a hard time. And please don’t say anything to Liz.”

Mr Parker sounded very serious. What was going on here?

“What is this all about Mr Parker? Just give me a hint is it something bad?”

“No – don’t worry Zan. It’s all fine – nothing to worry about. So enjoy the party okay?”

Zan was staring at Rath who didn’t dare to say a word. The group dissolved abd everybody joined the party again.

*****************
Liz saw her father, Max and Michael coming back all three looked somehow angry or ashamed. Now what was this about.

“Maria just let me talk to my father okay? Why don’t you entertain Michael a little bit he like he could use it.”

And with that she left her friend sitting at the table and made a beeline for her father.

“Dad? Everything okay?”

“Lizze – honey – enjoying the party?”

“Sure Dad – I asked you something? Everything okay? I just saw you coming back again with Zan and Rath and you three look a bit – angry.”

“Oh it’s nothing Liz, really, don’t worry about it – just enjoy the party will you?”

“I don’t believe you.”

Slowly Liz was getting impatient. Why did everybody think she was blind and stupid enough to ignore the obvious.

“Dad, I’ll ask Zan and I’m sure he’ll tell me so better spit it. One way or the other I will find it out eventually.”

“The king is coming? Are you serious? But why? Did something happen?”

“Not yet or I don’t know Liz why don’t you just wait until he gets here and then I’ll tell you everything but until I beg you not to ask me more questions okay? Be my good girl and have fun – everything is alright – nothing to worry about.”

“But Dad…”

“…Elisabeth I mean it! Leave it.”

Okay now this was a definite sign to better shut up and wait.

*************

Part 31

Max was sitting on a bench all alone. Liz had spotted him already some minutes ago but wasn’t sure what to do. Shall she approach him? Or leave him alone? He seemed so lost. Finally making up her mind she decided to go to him.

“Hey – everything okay?”

He slowly lifted his head, gazing into her eyes.

“No not really.”

Liz sat down next to him, taking his hand into hers. He was slowly getting used to the fact that Liz liked touching people, liked touching him. It was such a gentle tiny gesture but he already appreciated it more than anything else. How was he supposed to go on without her. Back on Antar people wouldn’t be like that. How had she managed to change him so much within two weeks? Was he so weak? Or was she just so mesmerizing?

“Do you want to talk about it?”

“I’m a little bit afraid. My father is coming to Earth and I don’t know why. It’ll change everything.”

“Only if you let it.”

“No, no you don’t know my father Liz. He’s the leader of a planet and the head of four other planets…he’s…”

Stopping in mid sentence he shook his head. This was getting them nowhere. It suddenly struck him that this might be his last chance to enjoy Liz’ company. He wasn’t sure what would happen tomorrow and after tomorrow but he knew that he wanted to always remember this evening.

“You know what Liz? Let’s not talk about it okay? Wanna dance?”

“Really? You and me? Here?”

“You and me, here…”

He held out his hand to her and she accepted it – happy. They didn’t bother to walk onto the dance floor instead the stayed in their secluded area, dancing. He held her close to his body, taking in her scent, her aura, her whole being. At first she had her head leaned against his chest but decided to watch him. His amber eyes were gazing down at her – she could see so much in them and she wondered if anybody had ever seen so much in them.

In a place that won’t let us feel
In a place where nothing seems real
I have found you
I have found you

In a world that’s moving too fast
In a world where nothing can last
I will hold you
I will hold you

Our lives will change, when tomorrow comes
Tonight our heart drown the distant drums
And we have music, all right
Tearing the night

A song
Played on a solo saxophone
A crazy sound
A lonely sound
A cry that tells us
Love goes on and on

Played on a solo saxophone
It’s telling me
To hold you tight
And dance
Like it’s the last night
Of the world

( © Miss Saigon ‘The last night of the world ‘’: Claude-Michel Schönberg)

And that’s exactly what both of them felt. Liz and Max were lost in each other’s eyes. For the first time in both of their lives they knew that they had found their other half. Max didn’t care if others could see, he didn’t care what his friends and Liz’ would think and he didn’t care what would happen tomorrow. He held her even closer, nipping at her bottom lip first then kissing her hungrily when she started returning his kiss. They opened some kind of connection and it surprised them both to see each others thoughts, desire and – yes – even love.

“What was that Max?”

Liz asked when he started kissing and licking her neck.

“I don’t know Liz…”

He was panting, her hands were slowly stroking his back.

“I don’t want to lose you Liz.”

He then admitted shyly.

“And I don’t want to lose you.…hold me.”

And so he did.

*****************
Maria approached Alex and Isabelle who were talking.

“Have you two seen Liz and Max?”

“No why? Is something wrong?”

“I just talked to Michael and Isabelle your father is coming.”

“My father?”

She shrieked jumping up from her chair. Why would he come down to Earth?

“Relax Isabelle I’m sure everything is fine.”

Alex tried to clam her not exactly understanding why she was so anxious about the fact that her father was also coming to Earth. After all she felt very lonely the first days here on Earth and seeing a parent could help her.

“No Alex you don’t understand a thing what is going on. If my father is really coming this means that something has happened or is going to happen. He never pays just a visit…there’s a reason. Do you know anything about it Maria?”

“No only that it has something to do with Max. But if you want to find out more ask Michael…I think he knows something.”

Any by that she was able to keep her promise of not telling anybody.
Isabelle took of in Michael’s direction and left her and Alex standing there.

“Why do I have the feeling that you know more than you say Maria?”

“Me? No…no me? C’mon Alex do you really think I could keep such an important secret? No way. I have to find Liz now.”

************

Part 32

Max and Liz were lying in the hotel’s garden on a blanket – staring into the sky. They had talked about everything – their feelings, hopes, fears, thoughts.

“I wish everything could be different.”

Max mumbled hand behind his head watching the moon and the stars shining down on them without a care. Liz who had also been lying on her back turned towards him facing him, taking in his profile, his chest slowly rising and falling.

“Me too.”

Was all she was able to respond. Breathing in deeply he finally also turned to her, looking into her doe eyes.

“Do you plan on going home together with your father?”

“I don’t know – I think I have no saying at all in this matter – it’s all depending on him I guess.”

“What do you think it is that our fathers have to talk about with us?”

“Somehow I think it has something to do with us. After all they were both determined that we get to know each other.”

“But why? Only because they’ve been friends for years?”

“Maybe…”

They got quiet again. Liz was biting her lip when she started leaning towards him, kissing him gently. At first it was a sensitive and gentle kiss which soon transformed into a very passionate and demanding one. They lost one another in each other’s arms and soon Max was on top of her, feeling her whole body pressed against his own.

“I wish you could stay here forever.”

Liz whispered.

“You know that’s impossible – I have a destiny.”

“For some reason I hate this word. Why can’t you be my destiny?”

After finishing her sentence Liz had flashback

I’m surrounded by happy couples and people who are destined for each other…
That had been Maria’s words after the ceremony what did she mean by that?

“Liz? Liz are you okay?”

Snapping out of her thoughts she smiled at Max again.

“I’m sorry I just…forget it.”

She would have to talk to Maria – as soon as possible. Something wasn’t right. Why hadn’t she thought about that before? But now wasn’t either the time nor the place to think about something like that.

“So tell me. Can I see your planet from here?”

Smiling Max rolled down from her, placing his head right next to Liz’ so that their heads were touching.

“Do you see those five stars forming a V?”

He pointed at the sky.

“Yes.”

“That’s the V- constellation – galaxy and the one in the middle is Antar my home planet. The other four are independent planets although my father is still the head of them.”

“And one day you’ll be.”

Liz muttered absent-minded. She wasn’t sure if she was happy or sad that she could at least se his planet when he had left again. Maybe it was a combination of both. Why had life to be so difficult? Why had the man she finally fall in love with to be an alien but not only an alien – no – the future leader of a whole galaxy, destined to be king and be bonded with a woman he didn’t even love. There – there it was again this word ‘destined’ – damn – and she wasn’t a part of that destiny. She snuggled closer to him, listening to his heart beating, taking in his scent, his presence so that she would never forget it. It wasn’t an option anyway he had put a spell on her forever.

*****************
Michael was sitting at the bar, one full glass of Whiskey in front of him – staring at it like it could attack him the next second.

“What do you think you’re doing?”

Isabelle suddenly appeared next to him. He gave her a warning look.

“How many did he have?”

She turned to the bar keeper , fearing Michael was drunk again. He should know by now that Antarians couldn’t hold the human liquor very well.

“His first.”

The bar keeper smiled, drying a glass.
Isabelle rising her eyebrows in surprise looked back at Michael.

“Okay…so what’s the matter? Why is my father coming?”

“I don’t wanna talk about it Vil’…I really don’t”

“Too bad…I wanna know so spit it out.”

She really didn’t care if he was feeling bad or if he was angry – she wanted to know first. After that she could still feel sorry for him or what ever.
Michael was getting angrier with every second. Why couldn’t she just leave him alone? Was that so hard to understand?

“Rath…”

Isabelle started but got interrupted by his outburst she really wasn’t counting on.

“You wanna know princess Vilandra why your father is coming? Because I failed him and in the progress lost my best friend. That’s why. I was sent here to spy on your brother – and now I failed within one week! I’m not afraid of the punishment of your father – I’m afraid of how I’m supposed to go in without my best friend. And now back off!!!”

Isabelle was flabbergasted…why would her father sent Rath here to spy on Zan? And what was her purpose in this whole charade?

“But…why would my father want you to spy on Zan?”

“Ask Maria – she knows – now please leave.”

He went back staring at the still full glass. If he drank it he would forget about this whole misery for at least this evening, he could have fun and do what ever he wanted to do because he wouldn’t remember the next day. Unfortunately it would solve the problem – Zan would still be angry the morning and he still had failed his king. This was hopeless.

*****************
After leaving Michael alone Isabelle decided to find Maria.

“Isabelle I know that I’ve asked you already but have you seen your brother and Liz by any chance? They’re missing.”

“No I haven’t but you and me we have to talk c’mon.”

She took Maria by her arm not listening to her protests.

“Isabelle you’re hurting me…what’s the matter with you?”

“I’ve just talked to Michael and he told me to ask you as you seem to know the reason my father is coming down to Earth. And I want to know Maria – Michael is down, Liz and Max are missing and in the moment you seem to be the only one who could tell me what’s going on.”

“Okay, okay…you better sit down though.”

They sat down on a bench.

“Okay…so you people on Antar have a check up I‘ve learned right?”

“Yeah but what has that to do with my brother and my father?”

“Don’t interrupt me Isabelle or you’ll never find out…fact is that somehow…and don’t ask me why because I don’t know the reason…anyway…Liz and Max match for 100%.”

“That’s impossible Maria…in the first place how are they supposed to know that right? We’re living in different galaxies. And then…it is just not possible.”

“Don’t tell me that Isabelle, ask your father I’m sure we’re all eager to know the truth. Fact is Michael is here to spy and tell your father about Max and Liz how they get along etc. and they don’t know…so please don’t tell them okay? I think the best thing is to wait for your father’s arrival and let him explain. And I need to find Liz and Max now, I’m worried that they might do something stupid.”

She left Isabelle sitting there all alone.

*************

Part 33

Jeff Parker had left the party immediately after talking to his daughter. Things were getting out of hand and he needed to contact his friend. Max and Liz had developed some kind of relationship but he was fearing that everything could go down the drain if they found out about the fact that the king and also him had conducted some kind of experiment. He could only hope that their feelings for each other were already strong enough to last through this mess. His daughter was happy and honestly he really didn’t care if she was with a man who was by coincident her destiny on another planet or if he was just one normal guy. As long as his girl was happy – he was satisfied. It hurt him to know that he had betrayed her – but what other choice did he have back then? The king had saved his daughter’s life and only asked for something trivial as that.

“Jeff – nice to hear from you again. How are you? How are things on Earth?”

“Besides the fact that your son knows that something is wrong everything is fine your highness. I wouldn’t ask you if it wasn’t important but your immediate presence is required. Things are getting out of hand. Zan and Rath are not on talking terms anymore, Liz also suspects that something is wrong. I would tell them but I think it would be better if you were here also.”

“Okay – but how did Zan find out?”

“I guess you underestimated your son’s intelligence. He’s a very clever man and he also knew that Rath was hiding something. They’re best friends I wouldn’t have expected anything else.”

“Fine – I’ll arrive as soon as possible – I have to talk to my advisers first. Don’t worry about me getting to your home…I’ll find it.”

“Okay then see you soon.”

*****************
Maria found Max and Liz in a secluded area of the garden. They looked so lovely together. Max had a protecting arm around her best friend, both sleeping.

“Hey you guys…”

Slowly both of them were opening their eyes.

“Maria?”

Liz sat up slowly feeling a little dizzy.

“What are you two doing here? I was worried.”

“We just wanted to spend some time alone.”

Max explained to Maria, missing already Liz’ closeness.

“Are you okay?”

“Why wouldn’t we be?”

“Well I thought with all the chaos I just wanted to make sure that you’re fine.”

“Maria – by the way do you know what’s going on here?”

Liz suddenly remembered that she needed to talk to Maria.

“W…why are you asking?”

“Because you said something that made me think – I have the feeling that you know what’s going on and if so tell me – tell us. Now!”

“Liz…I don’t know…”

“Stop it Maria…don’t start babbling Maria…just tell the damn truth.”

Maria let her shoulders sink, taking a deep breath, she finally said

“You’ve got to believe me that I found out only by coincident and I promised not to tell you. So please don’t ask me to tell you something I’m not allowed to. I can assure that it’s nothing bad and Max there’s no reason to be angry at Michael – he had no other choice. Your fathers will tell you everything…please Liz.”

She was desperate to know – somehow this whole destiny crap, although very romantic, had managed to divide the existing friendships within two weeks.

“You promise it’s really nothing bad?”

Liz still had her doubts but she knew deep in her heart that Maria would have already told her if something was wrong or if she would be in some kind of danger – that was for sure.

“It’s nothing bad really.”

Liz looked at Max.

“Okay.”

She nodded.

“So are you two coming? Vicky is going to throw the bride’s bouquet.”

“Why would she do that?”

Max asked while getting up holding out his hand to help Liz up also.

“It’s a tradition – the woman who’ll fetch it will be the next bride.”

“Really?”

Liz had to laugh because Max’ face had confusion written all over it.

“No of course not. Don’t believe everything you hear Max. They say that but it’s not necessary happening.”

Unconsciously she took his hand and they walked back together with Maria.

*****************
Everybody was already standing on the dance floor waiting for Vicky to throw her bouquet.

“Are you ready?”

Vicky smiled, turned around and counted.

“Uh this is so exciting.”

Maria shrieked, pulling Liz with her to the left side of the crowd.

“Okay…here we go.”

*****************
“I can’t believe you really caught the bouquet Liz.”

Maria hugged her friend for the hundred time since leaving the party.
They were now sitting on the porch to the Parker’s house. Liz was sitting between Max’ legs, he had his arms around her and his head resting on her shoulder. So many things were going around in his head. What was it that they all were keeping from him - them Liz also had no idea. He hadn’t spoken to Michael not during the rest of the party and not on the way back. Michael and Isabelle had already gone to bed – they both hadn’t been able to look him straight in the eye. That told him that his sister also seemed to know what this was all about. And then there was the fact that he was thinking about Liz and his future and that he wished to find a way to combine them. This wasn’t what he had expected when he was told to go to Earth. It would be really hard to get back to normal – but what was so great about normal? No one who told you how much he like or even loved you, no one who would touch you and make you get dizzy and excited, no one who really showed how much she cared about you. Maybe he could convince his father to change the rules a little bit. Geez Zan where did that come from? Ask your father to change the rule? Right as if that would be so simple.

“Max? Everything all right?”

Liz whispered suddenly.

“Hmm? Oh yeah why?”

“Because you didn’t say anything to Maria when she left…are you sure you’re alright?”

What was that about caring and changing the rule? There had to be a way!!!

“Sorry, I was just thinking. Why don’t we get to bed…it’s late.”

“Good idea.”

Liz nodded, getting up. It was an awkward situation. Things had gotten very passionate and heated back at the park and it had taken both of their will power to not do the deed right away. What was wrong with her? She had never done something like that before. She wasn’t someone who would sleep with a man after knowing him only for a short period of time – but with Zan it had felt so right, so ‘destined’ ?! Huh? This word again! But Max made the decision for her giving her a good-night kiss, whispering “Sleep tight and sweet dreams. See you tomorrow” and leaving her standing in front of her door.

*****************

Part 34

First thing in the morning Liz went to see her father. Her parents were sitting on the terrace awfully quiet.

“Morning.”

“Morning Dear…how was the rest of the party?”

Her mother smiled at her. Did she also know what this was all about? Sure she did, she was her father’s wife.

“So are you talking to me again?”

Her father watched her – every movement.

“Well I wanted to ask when the king will arrive?”

“As soon as possible. I spoke to him yesterday and he said he had to talk to his advisers first. How is Zan?”

“He’s fine…just as eager to know what’s going an as I am. I talked to Maria and she said that it’s nothing bad…is that true?”

“Depending on your view of things.”

Nancy Parker mumbled. Good meant for her that her daughter would stay on earth, forget about Zan and eventually marry a human. Bad meant, Liz would stay with Zan, marrying him and being the queen of a god damn planet somewhere in the universe.

“Nancy, please stop it. You know that neither you nor I can change anything.”

“I’m so sick of it Jeff I really am…I can’t wait for your friend to come here…telling the kids what’s going on and then hopefully getting back to normal.”

“What is she talking about Dad?”

“Nothing Lizzie…be patient.”

He left his wife and daughter on the terrace. God this had to end soon or his family would fall apart. He would lose his wife and daughter.

*****************
Max was sitting on the porch pondering again when a black limousine appeared. It stopped in front of the house the door opened and his father appeared. He stood up at once, taking a few steps towards his father. It was unusual to see him in humans clothes…nevertheless you could still see that he was someone special.

“Zan…my son…you look good.”

Before answering Zan bowed.

“I’m doing fine father…how was your trip?”

“Not very eventful…so shall we?”

They entered the house. It had been years that the king had been here in this house and here on Earth.

Zan followed his father through the house into the garden, where everybody was having breakfast in silence. Liz was missing, Zan was wishing nothing more that she would be here now.
With the appearance of his majesty Rath and Vilandra also rose, bowing. The same moment Liz came also out of the house.

“What’s the matter guys?”

Then she saw the tall man who looked exactly like Zan only older.

“Oh my god…I’m so sorry.”

She then said. Zan was taking her hand into his, assuring that she was okay. The king saw this not expected gesture of gentleness from his son.

“So you must be Liz, it’s a pleasure meeting you again. The last time I saw you, you were a baby. You’re as beautiful as your father told me.”

“Thank you. I didn’t know you knew me as a baby.”

“Oh yes I did but why don’t you two sit down…I think Jeff and me have a lot to tell you.”

Liz and Zan were exchanging worried glances before sitting down, ready to listen to whatever may come.
In the mean time Jeff approached his friend.

“It’s been a while.”

“Yes…you look good Jeff, really.”

“You too.”

“Excuse me.…can we please the pleasantries out and get to the point? This is driving me nuts.”

Vilandra got impatient. Both men looked at her, smiling but with determination on their faces that they don’t want any more interruption.

“Sorry.”

She sat down again, glancing at her hands.

Jeff took a seat, the king besides him.

“Okay…so this isn’t really easy for me…but I think the best way is just to tell the facts and after that you can ask any question you want. I don’t want any interruption.”

He watched the group. Michael was nervous, Vilandra ashamed, Mrs Parker relieved, Liz and Zan afraid. He was really surprised by the closeness of those two, they were a cute couple and he only could hope that they would stay together even after finding out the truth.

“It all started when Liz was born. She was a cute baby and loved by her parents. Unfortunately she was born with an incurable illness…or so the doctors here on earth thought. Jeff and me had been friends for years and he knew that my people were able to heal. So he contacted me, asking me for help. And how could I refuse that? He helped me so much becoming the man I’m today…he even saved my life once…but that’s another story. Anyway…my people fetched Liz and I promised him to do everything in my power to heal her. Doctors on earth had discovered a genetic anomaly and now it was my turn to help this small girl. As we knew that it was a anomaly we took a blood sample analysing it – starting with the check up procedure – her blood was 100% antarian.”

Gasps could be heard, Liz had turned pale.

“So she was able to exist in our atmosphere but not in her own. You all know that your given an injection direct after your birth which makes it possible for you to live on Earth. Humans when they’re coming to Antar need also an injection to be able to live in our atmosphere. So we added the missing gene to her gene pool and with that sent her back one week later. The reason why I wanted you two to get to know each other Zan and Liz is that Liz is your perfect match my son. I know that people on Antar do believe in this way of getting together – but honestly I don’t not anymore. I wanted you to get to your match the human way – I wanted to know if you would get together nevertheless.”

“How high?”

Was the only question Zan was able to ask.

“100%”

“So…you’re actually telling me that you found my match 23 years ago? A human? My match? This is impossible Dad…and how was it possible for her to have antarian blood.”

“We don’t know…coincident…destiny…I don’t know.”

“So we were nothing like guinea pigs for you?”

Zan suddenly shouted, realizing what his father had just told him.

“You would never allow me to marry a human, she’s no royalty and not from Antar and…and…”

“Zan…do you really think that I would do something like that to you if I wouldn’t approve of it? If you really love Liz then so be it. I knew exactly what I did when I asked Jeff for this favour. Don’t you see that it all has a reason? I want you to be a king who’ll change his people…make them realize that there’s more in life…not only obeying and working.”

“You want me to make them act human?”

“More or less but yes. I’m too old for those changed but you, you’re young and the people honour you already more then me when I was your age.”

Liz was stunned…she was antarian…no human but had antarian genes. She was Zan’s destiny but they had found each other the human way.

“What would have happened if Zan and me…you know would be still hating each other?”

She then asked the king.

“Nothing…Zan would have returned to Antar, getting bonded with his second match and that’s it.”

“And why if I had found some other human girl?”

“Fine by me…then it also would have been your decision. But honestly I never had a doubt about you two…I knew you would get together…you are together aren’t you?”

Zan turned to Liz who was now also looking at him.

“I…I think…”

it was only a slight movement but Zan could make out a small nod

“…yes we’re.”

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:18:20 AM
Part 35

“You can’t be serious Liz, do you know what that means? Do you have any idea what the meaning is of your decision? Don’t get me wrong, you’re my daughter and I only want the best for you but…I don’t want to lose you.”

Nancy Parker stood up and faced her daughter. She didn’t care about the other people around, she was afraid of losing her daughter and she would be damned if she wouldn’t at least try to talk some sense into Liz.

“Mum no one is making any decisions here and I so then it would be mine and Zan’s.”

“But I don’t want to lose you Liz…”

“You won’t lose me Mum, why don’t we just wait and see where it will lead us.”

Nancy couldn’t believe what she was hearing and desperate was she was she took off into the house.
Jeff watched his wife disappearing took a look at the king, stood up, excused himself and followed her.

“Rath would you and Vilandra please let me talk to Zan and Liz alone?”

The king asked his son’s future second in command. Surprisingly his daughter didn’t complain and just stood up and followed Rath into the house. Zan stood at the edge off the terrace, his arms crossed before his chest deep in thought. Liz was sitting at the table, pondering staring into nothing. The king was watching those two people. He had been right, they were made for each other, 100% or not.

“Zan would you please sit down with me and Liz I want to talk to you two.”

His son turned around slowly, nodded and sat down next to Liz, took her hand into his, stroking it slightly with his thumb. She smiled at him encouragingly. She was confused definitely but she knew one thing, she wouldn’t give him up – if he really was the love of her life she would do anything to keep him.

“I know that you’re confused now, perhaps even angry…Liz I want to tell you that I’ve always appreciated your parents and I know that it was a lot I had asked them for back then. Your mother always had had her doubt and she still has them…she’s afraid of losing you. Fact is she’s right, although the technology today is far more advanced and travelling from one planet to the other and from one galaxy to the other you have to consider that if you decide to be my son’s future you won’t see them so often again. It’s a lot to take in and believe me I know that and that is why I want to you two to take your time, get to know each other a lot better.”

“How could you do that Dad?”

Zan suddenly asked his father, he hadn’t figured out every fact of this whole mess but he sure didn’t like the fact that he felt used, like a guinea pig somehow. And thinking about the fact what his father had also done to Liz’ family.

“I understand that you’re angry Zan…”

“…no Dad I’m not angry I fell ashamed, humiliated how could you do that to a family which you expect to give up their daughter to become the queen of a far away planet.”

As surprised as Liz was by his outburst she needed to stop this before everything got out of hand.

“Okay stop it Zan, please…after all he saved my life, please. I’m as shocked as you and I have every reason for it. I even didn’t know that I was ill when I was born and this whole destiny thing is as new to me as to you…besides that fact that you always knew that you had a destiny.”

Zan knew that Liz was right but he just wasn’t sure how to sort out his feelings – feelings? What about them? Were his feelings for her true or was it just somehow a gut feeling that she was his match? How was he supposed to figure that out?

“So tell me where’s the catch?”

“What do you mean?”

“I think that you haven’t told us everything. I know you, better than you might think Dad, so tell me, tell us what you want from us.”

“I…okay so I haven’t told you the whole truth. Truth is, I expect you back to Antar in two weeks, the yearly convention will be held and I want you to join me it’s time for you to do so.”

“…and…?”

“…and the others expect me to announce your bonding…”

The king finally admitted. Zan and Liz both gasped.

“Two weeks?”

Liz suddenly shrieked, stood up and ran away.

“Liz? Liz!”

Zan also jumped out of his chair but was being held back by his father.

“Let her go, she needs some time to think about this Zan.”

“I…I just don’t understand how you could do that to me father. How am I supposed to know if my feelings for her are real? I…”

“Don’t you see that they are Zan? Before you came to Earth you didn’t care about the feelings of other people because you grew up with feeling as little as possible, holding back any kind of emotions. And within two weeks Liz managed to change you, she’s the one for you and I wish that our people those you will one lead one day can look at you and see what can happen to them if they just let their feelings free. I want you two to be an example and I know that can never disappoint me.”

“But what if Liz decides to stay on Earth…what if she doesn’t want to be an example.…I mean I’ve been born into this role, from the day I was born everybody knew that I will be king one day but Liz has a choice and I’m not sure if I wanted to become a king if I had the choice.”

Zan got very serious, he really didn’t want to hurt his father but unfortunately it was true. He was born to be the next king and there was nothing he could do about it.

“Do you want to tell me that you don’t want to become king?”

“That’s not what I’m saying, I know that this is my destiny and I’ll do my best but Liz, she’s human, she’s not from Antar and…she wasn’t prepared to be a queen, so how is this supposed to work out?”

“She’s a clever woman Zan, don’t underestimate her. I can’t tell you two what to do neither you nor Liz so…I know that it isn’t a lot, two weeks can fly by faster as you think but use them wise Zan, talk to Liz, I’m sure she’ll have a lot of questions, a lot of worries. Try to find out what you want, what she wants and what you both want and then either you’ll bring her with you when you return back to Antar or you won’t. It’s up to you.”

Zan’s father got up and wanted to leave, he didn’t plan on staying on Earth that long.

“Oh and Zan don’t blame Rath for ‘spying’ on you – he had no other choice but believe me he’s the best friend you could ever have so also talk to him.”

Zan only nodded, waited until his father was gone and then took off in search for Liz. He couldn’t think of one place but the park and he was right. There she was sitting at the sandbox, letting the sand run trough her fingers, tears on her cheeks.

*****************
Liz was confused that couldn’t be true why was life so unfair at times? First thing, why didn’t her parents tell her about her illness? She had a right to know that. Second thing, she had finally found someone to love but she had to decide within two weeks if she wanted to spend the rest of her life with him in another galaxy or if she stayed back on Earth, alone…damn!

She could hear someone approaching her but she refused to look up. As soon as this person sat down next to her she knew that it was Zan without looking up.

“Hey.”

“Hey.”

“Are you okay?”

“No not really.”

“I know….me too. I…I don’t know what to think about all of this.”

“Where is your father?”

“He went back to Antar. I’m…Liz I’m sorry what my father did wasn’t right.”

“You don’t have to say that…it isn’t your fault.”

She still refused to look at him, instead she started drawing in the sand.

“I don’t know what to think this is all so much to take in, so confusing and so life changing no matter what decision I make. You’ll leave in two weeks no matter what my decision will be and…”

“…Liz I can’t ask you to leave your friends, your family, your home only because of me…I’m not sure if I’m even worth it.”

Zan stared at his hands, this wasn’t easy. He had the urge to hold her in his arms and tell her that everything would be alright but that would be a lie and Liz would know it.
Liz finally looked at him.

“Don’t say something like that Zan, I know that you would be worth it, I just don’t know if I would be worth to be the queen on your side, if your people would accept me and if I would be strong enough to be what you want me to be. I’m frightened, I…”

The last words she chocked out. ‘Damn Liz get a grip, don’t cry in front him don’t show him how terrified you are. This is difficult enough without you breaking down.’ Liz thought but she couldn’t stop the tears running down her cheeks.
Zan knelt down in front of her, brushing the tears away with his thumbs, looking her straight in the eye.

“Liz I…”

Swallowing was nearly impossible for him.

“…why don’t we enjoy the next two weeks as much as possible…we don’t have to talk about it and I don’t expect anything from you…”

“but what if I want to talk about it Zan? How am I supposed to make such an important decision if I don’t know anything about your home and…and…”

“Shh…”

As soon as new tears left her eyes, he took her in his arms, holding her as tight as possible.

“I don’t wanna lose you. I know it sounds crazy because we only know each other for two weeks but…you’re the one.”

She mumbled into his chest. It was hard for him not to start crying also, one of them had to be the strong one.

“Ditto.”

*****************

Part 36

When Maria was arriving at the Parker’s house Michael was sitting on the steps head in his hands.

“So how did it go?”

Surprised by hearing her voice he looked up, then shrugged his shoulders.

“They know…then Zan’s father wanted to talk with them alone and next thing I saw was Liz running out of the garden and some minutes after that Zan following her so go figure.”

“Puh…at least they know right? Is his father still here?”

“No he already left again.”

“And did he blame you or did he say anything?”

“No not really, he just said that I shouldn’t give up and that he talked to Zan on my behalf and he told me that Zan will be expected back on Antar in two weeks but that I could stay here a little longer that is if I want to.”

“Two weeks? No wonder that Liz ran away…so do you need some kind of distraction?”

“What do you mean?”

“I’m talking about having a little fun Spaceboy – you look really depressed and it won’t help you sitting here pondering so what do you think?”

“I don’t know it just doesn’t feel right.”

“Michael – they have to figure that out on their own and if they want to talk they’ll either come to us or we’ll approach them later but in the moment there’s nothing we can do.”

“What about Isabelle? She’s in her room also thinking about what she just had heard.”

“I’ll call Alex. He’ll distract her okay?”

Michael was thinking about Maria’s suggestion. She was right…when he saw Zan following Liz he knew that those two would have a lot to talk about. Problem was that he really didn’t know where he was standing with Zan.

“Okay Maria you won.”

“Great so let’s go.”

*****************
Liz had stopped crying some minutes ago but still she refused to let go of him.

“What are we going to do Zan?”

“Dunno how about we go back to your house and you talk to your parents while I’ll talk to Rath and Vilandra?”

“And after that?”

“Lunch?”

In that exact moment his stomach decided to grumble, underlining his suggestion. Automatically both started chuckling and Liz felt a little bit better.

“Thank you.”

“For what?”

“For being there for me and for understanding…that means a lot to me and considering what a jackass you were when you arrived here it’s more than I could ever hope for.”

“Why thank you Ms Parker may I remind you that you weren’t any better?”

Both knew that they were joking and they really needed that to lighten up the situation at least a bit.

They slowly walked back to the house, holding hands.

“How about going out with me tonight?”

He suddenly asked her and stopped walking.

“I think I would like that, where do you wanna go?”

“Where ever you want to go.”

He pulled her towards him again and kissed her on the forehead.

“I wish I could take away all your sorrow and pain.”

“Thanks.”

“Look what you made of me – I’m a softy.”

He then chuckled, stroking her back.

“No you’re human.”

Liz stated hardly audible gazing up into his eyes. He didn’t know what to say next so he decided to just kiss her, enjoy her presence…he would have time to think about it later, maybe even talk to his sister about it – or Rath. Yes he definitely needed to talk to him. He had overreacted he knew that but wasn’t that his right? This situation wasn’t normal after all.

*****************
Nancy Parker had been crying non-stop ever sine she had left the other’s on the terrace. He husband had only left her when the king had said his good-bye. She could hear the door opening and close.

“Jeff…I really…really don’t…”

“Mum it’s me.”

She looked up and saw her daughter standing there – she had been crying also.

“Oh Lizzie-Baby…I’m so sorry, so sorry.”

New tears were streaming down her face.

“Mum…it’s okay really but I want to talk to you.”

“Okay.”

Liz sat down next to her mother on the bed, thinking of what to tell her mother exactly.

“I…I…I have two weeks to decide what I’m going to do. Zan will leave in two weeks and either I go with him or I stay here. I don’t know what to do Mum.”

“Do you love him?”

“I think I do…but before we talk about that I wanted to know why you didn’t tell me that I was born with an anomaly in my genes?”

“We thought that it wouldn’t be necessary for you to know that. After all you were healed and your father’s friend had assured us that everything would be fine. That was the most important thing for us that you live.”

“Okay…”

Liz nodded she knew that she wouldn’t get out more of her mother.

“So do you?”

“Do I what?”

“Love him?”

“I think I do.”

“I knew it, I knew it and that’s why I didn’t want him to come. I knew that I would lose you.”

“Mum I haven’t made a decision yet.”

“Don’t fool yourself Liz. You’ve been waiting long enough for some one to love and he’s the one. I can see it in your eyes, no matter how frightened you might be now, you’ll go with him.”

Liz was surprised by the honesty and seriousness in her mother’s words. This was so hard – two weeks and after that nothing would be the same again. How was she supposed to make such a decision? Why her?

“I’m afraid that I won’t be strong enough, what if I fail him miserably?”

“You won’t do that, you’re always doing and giving your best. I think Jeff and me we have raised one of the strongest and honourable woman in the world and I’m proud of that I just wish that it could all be easier. Ever since I knew the plan I tried to prepare myself for what might happen and…and…but how Liz? You’re my daughter and every year I was allowed to spend with you was like miracle considering the fact that doctors wouldn’t give you a year to live. I’m your mother so how can they expect my to give you up?”

“Mum…”

Both women started crying again. Nancy took her daughter into her arms, holding her tight.

*****************
Vilandra was staring into space. Several questions were going around in her head. What was her purpose? What was the purpose of being here? Was there any or were the all just guinea pigs?
She heard the door open and felt somebody sitting down on her bed but she was to wrapped up in her own world to realize who it was.

“Vil’?”

“Hmm?”

“Vil’ can we talk?”

Zan – yes it was Zan, her brother. She snapped out of her trance like state and watched him. He looked miserable – oh what had their father done to him.

“Has he left?”

She asked without any emotion in her voice? How dare he treating his children like that? Other kings didn’t really care about their children but he – he had to mess with their lives.

“Yes – yes he did, he expects me back in two weeks.”

“Two weeks? And what then?”

“Then…either Liz will go with me or she’ll stay here.”

“How can you let him go through with that Zan?”

“What other options do I have Vil’? He’s the king, he is not to be doubted.”

“What happened to you Zan? Two weeks on Earth and you take everything as given? As if the other Zan had never existed. Would you be on Antar you wouldn’t allow him to that to you.”

“Vil’ I don’t get why you’re so angry – it’s my life and Liz’ he had been playing scientist with so why do you complain?”

“Because I feel used also – don’t you see? I may only be your sister but the reason he also sent me here was to test if I would also adjust here, if I would find a partner here – you and Liz may have been the main reason but there was a purpose that he sent Rath and me down here also…and I can’t understand how mother let him go through with it.”

“I’m sure mother hadn’t much to say in that matter. I think you’re right, unfortunately there’s nothing we can do.”

“Oh there is and I’m going to tell you want I’ll do – I’ll stay here.”

Did he hear that right? His sister – stuck-up princess wanted to stay on Earth? She couldn’t be serious.

“And why would you do that?”

“Because this is something he doesn’t count on – I’ll stay on Earth indefinitely and I will only come back if I want to and don’t even think about ordering me back when you’re the king Zan. I will not allow either of you to use me again.”

“And how do you think this will work? How are you going to pay for your life, where do you wanna stay and…and…Vil this is ridiculous.”

“You don’t believe me? Then watch out! I’m sue that the Parker’s will help me in the beginning and there’re Alex and Maria – they might be Liz’ friends but they would never let anybody who needs their help.”

In that moment they could both hear a knock, the door opened and Alex entered the room.

“Oh m sorry I didn’t know you weren’t alone Izzy.”

“No problem Alex, Max wanted to leave anyway.”

Great just great – Zan’s world was falling apart – he had never thought that his sister would fell that hurt. She was serious – he knew her better than anybody else and when she had made up her mind there was nothing anyone could do. So now it looked like that there were only two weeks left to spend with his sister…and Liz.

*****************

Part 37

Liz had been trying to talk to Maria for over two hours. She hadn't seen Max or her parents or anybody else and besides that she wasn't in the mood for anybody else - she needed Maria - she needed someone to talk to - she needed her best friend - she needed an advise. Two weeks - two damn weeks and in her heart she knew that she would never find someone like Max again. So there was nor real option or was there?

"Okay - last try if she won't pick up then I quit and have to think of something else."

She mumbled, dialing Maria's number for the hundredth time. Ring - ring - ring…

"Yes - Liz What's up?"

"Maria finally - Maria where the hell are you?"

She could hear her laughing and a male voice in the background.

"Who's with you Maria? Who's that?"

"Wow wow wow, keep cool there chica. What's the matter with you?"

"What the matter is? Maria you know what the matter is, you know very well that Max' father was just here and I could really, really need my best friend now to talk to…and…and…"

Maria could hear Liz getting my hysteric and starting to cry with every second going by.

"…and my life is falling apart and I don't know what to do and then…then…I try to call my best friend…and I can't reach her…and…and I don't know what to do and…I…"

Michael and Maria had both become very quiet hearing Liz on the phone.

"Liz honey...please don't cry, please, I'm sorry that …that uhm…where are you? You at home? I'll be there as soon as possible okay? Okay? Liz?"

Sniveling on the other end of the phone, a silent 'Okay' and then the line went dead.

*****************
Michael started packing up the picnic basket.

"Okay let's go Maria, that sounded bad and I mean real bad and when Liz is like that I'm sure that Max is as confused as her and maybe Isabelle also needs some support.

"You're right, how could I forget about that all."

Maria got up with Michael's help but instead of letting go they kept on touching and looking into each other's eyes.

"Well…maybe I know…this…this was great Maria. Thank you for the nice morning and picnic and everything."

Michael smiled at her and he had the sudden urge to pull her to him, to kiss her and to hold her. He really had enjoyed this strange thing called 'picnic'. She had made him forget about all this mess, she had made him laugh and he knew that if Max wouldn't need him back on Antar he would definitely stay a little longer. He wanted to get to know Maria and if there was really a chance that the rules on Antar would soon change then he wanted to be familiar with feelings and everything that came with it.

"Thanks I have to admit that I also really enjoyed it, maybe we can repeat that some day."

"That would be nice, I'd like that."

Michael nodded slowly, picked up the basket and they went back to Maria's car.

When they got to the house Max was sitting on the porch steps, face hidden behind his face, but to both of them in was obvious that he felt as miserable as Liz had sounded. Damn so this was really bad - really bad.

*****************
Maria softly knocked on Liz' room door.

"Liz are you in there?"

No answer, so she slowly opened it and found her friend lying on her bed behind masses of tissues.

"Oh chica, what happened?"

Maria sat down next to Liz at once and within the next second Liz threw herself into her best friend's arms.

"Oh Maria you have no idea…what happened…I…why me? Why always me?"

"Okay Liz you have to calm down okay? And then please give me the short cut version starting after you found out that and Max are made for each other."

"You knew didn't you?"

Liz blew her nose, watching Maria.

"Yes…yes I did Michael told me when he was drunk and I had to promise not to tell anyone. Please don't hate me for it okay? So what is it Liz? Why are you crying?"

"Max…I mean Zan has to go back to Antar in two weeks and…and…"

Liz started to sob and tremble again.

"…and I have to decide if I go with him or stay on Earth."

"What? Two weeks?"

Maria couldn't believe what she just had heard.

"Two weeks Liz? Are you sure? I mean why only two weeks? I mean he could go back to Antar and you could follow him some time later. Or He comes back to earth again or…Liz this is impossible."

"Maria I know that but…but his father expects him back on Antar in two weeks, he's supposed to join him for a very important convention and…although he really didn't say it but I think that everybody is expecting Zan to get bonded or married or whatever soon and…and that means either I go with him and leave all of this behind or I'll lose him."

A new tissue was needed by the end of the sentence. Maria was dumbfounded, she was speechless again - how did those Antarians do that by the way? Having no idea at all what to do next she tried to comfort Liz and let her clam down. Of course she was also wondering what Michael and Max were doing.
It took Liz again some minutes to really clam down.

"So do you already have any idea what you want to do or…."

She didn't want to even pronounce the idea that Liz might know what to do.

"I…I'm lost Maria. I mean I know I love him, I know that and I also know that I'll never find someone like him again but…there's so much more to it Maria. It isn't only about the fact that I love him…he'd expect so much of me and his father and mother and his people and…and I'm not even Antarian. I mean how can those people respect someone who's not like them. I don't have their powers and…and…"

"But you have it in you Liz remember?! Maybe you could do something about that and you know that everybody loves you and I'm sure that even those people will love you."

Liz tried to smile.

"You don't know them Maria. I know that you want to help me but even you don't know the answers to my fears…not even Prince Zan."

Maria was surprised by the sound of so much respect for Max or Zan in Liz' voice. Ever since she had met him she had never really talked about him like that but unfortunately Liz was right. Maria knew nothing about the royal family nor about antarian life itself nor about the people there.

"Have you talked to him about your fears? Have you talked about it in some way?"

"Not really, he told me that he accepts any decision I make and that he won't pressure me to talk about and Maria he was so gentle and nice and understanding and…"

Liz was at a loss of words.
Both women grew very quiet both pondering about this whole situation and searching for some kind of solution.

*****************

Part 38

Michael stood still. Max hadn't moved a bit since Maria had left them.
He was confused and insecure what to do or say next…this was new to him and in addition he didn't know if Max was still angry.

"So…uhm…you wanna talk?"

he finally mumbled sitting down next to his friend. Max didn't move.

"I…I…uhm…Liz called Maria and…and…"

Michael stuttered.

"Two weeks Rath, I'm expected back on Antar in two weeks and that means that I have two weeks left to spend with the most wonderful woman I've ever met in my whole life and two weeks with my sister you has decided in her stubbornness to stay here on Earth."

"What? She can't do that Zan? She's the king's daughter. She's the antarian princess she has to go back."

"She's angry and disappointed about our father's behavior. You know her Rath and if she wants to stay here there's nothing I could do…the funny thing is I can understand her a bit and I even think that I would do the same thing if I was in her position. But I'm not."

"What does she want to do here? Where will she live and…and…Zan you can't be serious."

Michael couldn't believe that his best friend, a man he had learned to honor for his strength and persuasiveness was giving up so easily on his only sister.

"I think she'll talk to the Parkers and she has Alex, Maria and Liz…"

"why Liz how do you know that she won't go with you?"

"She won't…I won't let her."

"Zan!"

Was he crazy, sure it wasn't easy but …hell how often did you find your soulmate? And he would let her go?

"I'm serious Rath and neither you nor Liz nor anybody else will be able to change my mind. I know what I'm saying and I can't ask Liz to leave all of this her home, her family and her friends behind. This isn't only about feelings - love, this is about more Rath. I'm the crown prince, supposed to take over my father's position very soon and I don't know if I'll be capable of that. How do I know that I won't fail my father and our people. My father wants me to change our people but who guarantees me that they'll listen to me? How do I know what to do and how to lead those people. Everybody is expecting so much from me and I…Rath I honestly have started to have my doubts that I'll be able to be what they all want me to be. So how can I ask Liz to come with me to a planet she doesn't know, be the queen and on my side day and night if I don't know myself what's right or wrong? How could I do that?"

"Zan…maybe you would need her to be your strength to overcome all those fears. Have you ever thought about that? Maybe you're right, maybe this would all be too much for you if you had to face it all on your own but what if you had her by your side. We both know that she is a strong and intelligent woman and your father would have never sent you here if he hadn't known that. Your father might have used strange methods to get you two together but he had a plan and he knew that you both would be strong to overcome any obstacles thrown your way. Our people love you Zan, they always did when ever I'm with them I can hear how proud they're of their soon to be king. They love you and they will hear what you have to say believe me Zan. And Liz…I can understand that you don't want to force her to do something she doesn't want to do. But what if she wants to Zan? What if she loves you so much that she would leave everything behind. Have you ever thought about that?"

"But that's exactly the problem Rath, don't you see? No matter if she wants to leave her home willingly or not - she would give up everything, her home, her family, her friends and she would do it all because of me."

"So where's the problem?"

"I could never do that Rath, no matter how much I wanted to. So how can I ask her to do something so big if I couldn't. That's just not fair."

"But what if you don't have to ask her? What if she really wants to come with you, will you tell her to stay back?"

"I…I honestly don't know."

"Have you talked to her about it?"

"No - not really I don't want to put more pressure on her."

"As honorable as this might be Zan but you have to talk to her Zan. Two weeks isn't so much time so talk to her."

They both got quiet. Then Max stood up.

"My father explained to me that he had ordered you to not say anything and that I shouldn't be angry with you for spying on me."

Michael wasn't sure if he wanted to look up and into Zan's eyes, he knew how powerful his best friends eyes were.

"So what did you say?"

He asked instead tying to sound as calm as possible but fearing what Zan might say.

"I told him to never ask my best friend again to spy on me - he'd regret it."

Now Michael had the courage to look up. Zan was standing in front of him, hands in his trousers pockets, staring down on his friend. Michael only nodded his head slightly.

*****************
"So tell me again why did you want to get out there as fast as possible."

Alex asked Isabelle again while they were enjoying their ice-cream on Newbury Street.

"It's a long story Alex let's just but it that way, my father visited us today and he told us about some stuff I didn't like so I've made up my mind and decided that I don't like being treated that way and that I'll stay here in Boston and you my friend will help me."

"Me?"

"Yes I mean, only if you want to."

Isabelle was a little unsure how to approach this. She still hadn't figured out everything about this human life but she was willing to try.

"Listen Alex, I know that I really misbehaved when we got to know and I still don't know a lot bout your people but I thought that you could help me…only if you wanted to of course."

"Are you kidding me Isabelle? Of course I'll help you, so don't hesitate to ask okay?"

"Great thank you."

*****************
Max opened the door to Liz' apartment and found her and Maria sitting in kitchen laughing and chuckling.

"Hey what's so funny?"

"Hey Max, nothing we were just talking about stuff we did when we were like fifteen."

"Oh…so…uhm…could, could we talk Liz?"

Maria got up, took her bag.

"I think I better leave you two alone. Is Michael in his room Max?"

"Yes I think so."

"Great, later."

"Bye."

Liz also got up, putting away the plates and glasses, somehow she couldn't find the strength to look into his eyes.

"Are you okay?"

She felt him right behind her and then his hand moving gently over her arm. Although she was trying hard she couldn't stop trembling.

"I…I think."

Her voice was quivering and she cleared her throat several times.

"Liz I know that I promised not to…uhm…talk about this whole mess but…"

"I know …I know that we have to…I just don't know what to say."

She admitted hardly audible, finally turning around to face him. His eyes were reflecting her emotions he was as confused and sacred as she was but she could also see so much love in them that it was difficult not to ravish him right now.

"So why don't we…uhm.…would you like to go for a walk?"

Liz asked.

"I'd like that."

Five minutes later they were on their way. Both pondering what to say or how to start.

"So uhm, I…I thought about something well Maria also mentioned it I was wondering…"

Liz started babbling not sure how to formulate her question.

"What? Just say it, don't be afraid Liz okay? This is important for us, we have to be honest with each other."

"Right."

Biting her lip and staring to the ground.

"Your father mentioned that I've antarian genes and that we're…uhm compatible as a result of that."

Suddenly both could feel their cheeks turning red and no matter how hard Liz tried she was chuckling.

"I'm sorry Max…but this is a really…I don't know…"

Max had also a hard time not to laugh he was just happy that the situation itself was a little lighter again.

"Anyway so…uhm we're compatible, so do I have any of your powers?"

"Oh…uhm I…I don't know but I'd say yes, you just don't know how to use them."

"So how do you do it?"

"How do I use my powers?"

Liz nodded.

"I don't know I just do."

"Can you teach me?"

Now this surprised him a lot but he had to admit he liked the idea to help her waking up her hidden powers. This could be really interesting.

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:20:37 AM
Part 39

"Okay, so what do you want to learn first?"

"What do you mean?"

"Well, see Liz we have different abilities but what we all can do just the same is changing the molecular structure of things - like…"

Max picked up a stone from the ground, showed it to Liz, then he moved his hand over it which started glowing red and when he moved his hand away the stone had turned into a rose made of stone. He moved his hand back over it and again it was just a plain stone.

"Wow, how did you do that?"

"I honestly don't know, I mean I've grown up with using my powers so I don't really have to do a lot I only imagine what I want to do and it happens."

Liz was looking at him in a very confused way.

"Okay something easy, here this tissue…I wan it blue now okay?"

So he repeated the movement of his hand and …voila…it was blue.

"You have to concentrate on the centre of your power, your inner strength. Close your eyes."

While Liz was closing her eyes he put the tissue into her hand and moved behind her. He was now standing right behind her and started whispering into her ear.

"Fell the power inside you Liz and imagine the tissue, can you feel it? Can fell where it touches your skin and wants to become one with you?"

"Yeah."

"Okay now imagine it red, the brightest red you have ever seen, can you see that red? How it is calling for you?"

"Yes."

"Then try it."

Liz moved her hand over the tissue, Max was watching her - he knew that it would take a lot of time until something would happen IF something would happen.
She opened her eyes and found the tissue - blue.

"Damn."

"Shshsh…have you ever done something right without any practice? Liz? You've got to be patient."

"But we don't have the time Max, only two weeks."

Now he turned her around, glaring down into her eyes.

"Liz stop it okay? Stop putting so much pressure on you. I told you that I won't force you to come with me…I'm helping you because I want you to get to know yourself and I don't do it because there might be a chance that you would go with me. This isn't important for me if you have powers or if you don't that has nothing to do with the way I feel about you."

As Liz was still avoiding his eyes he took her face into his hands and moved her so that she had no other option.

"Look at me Liz…"

and she did.

"…do you trust me?"

"Yes."

"Good and do you trust me when I say that you don't have to have any powers to be accepted?"

"Yes but…"

"No buts Liz, stop right there, so my question now is - I want you to give me a honest answer. Do you want to learn to use your powers because you really want to or do you only want to out of the reason that you might need them on Antar?"

So Liz contemplated of course she wanted to know what she was capable of but another reason was also Antar.

"I want to learn what I can do."

"Okay, so let's start again, shall we?"

He moved back to his earlier position behind her and put his arms around her, moving his hands over her.

"Okay now concentrate on what you want to do okay? I'll just give you hand."

Liz concentrated again on the item in her hand. She could feel that something was happening, felt something warm in her hand and a strange power surrounding her. Surprised by all of this she opened her eyes and saw Max' hand as well as hers glowing.

"Max."

"Yeah I see…"

He chuckled slightly and held the tissue up.

"Well it's not really red but…it's an improvement."

He laughed at the sight in front of him, the tissue was now pale pink nearly white.

"Oh my god how did I do that?"

"What did you feel? Can you remember what you felt?"

She nodded her head enthusiastically.

"Okay then try again."

He handed it back to Liz and she tried again and again and again.

*****************
When Michael hear Isabelle coming home he went over to her at once.

"What do you think you're doing? You can't stay here on Earth."

"Who's saying that? You? I don't think that you have the authority to order me around Rath."

"What is wrong with you Vilandra? What has gotten into you? Your brother needs you now, it's not easy for him and here you are creating a fuss over something that hardly has to do with you."

"Excuse me? May I remind you that my father treated me - us like a thing? He played with us and only heaven knows how much longer he would have kept that up if Zan hadn't sensed that something was wrong?!"

"Well Vilandra I have news for you he's the king and he can do what ever he wants to do."

"He's also my father."

"And? He only wanted the best for you, for us…don't you see that he won't force you to bond? He gives you the chance to choose your mate. He wants your brother to change the rules, how blind are you Vilandra? Are you so narrow minded that you don't see the possibilities your father is giving you?"

Vilandra got up from her bed and moved over to Rath. She was now standing right in front of him.

"Well Rath you just said it - so many possibilities, I've the right to choose what I want to do, so I'm deciding to stay here and now leave."

With that she turned around giving Rath no chance to say anything else. So what now? He knew that Zan needed his sister - and Vilandra knew this as well. So how could she do this to him? Nobody had ever understood the connection those two shared and he feared that the loss of his sister might weaken Zan.

*****************

Part 40

It was way after midnight when Max and Liz came back to the house. Nancy Parker was pacing the porch and when seeing her daughter, ran up to her and hugged her fiercely.

"Where have you been? Oh my god Liz I was so worried. What happened to you? Where have you been?"

"Mum, I'm fine…we just needed some time to, sort some things out and…we wanted to be alone. I'm fine really."

"I was so worried."

Max felt a little bit strange seeing how much Nancy Parker cared for her daughter and the bad conscience came back. Liz and he had spent a really nice day. After trying for hours to change the damn tissue into red she finally made it and after that she was really exhausted. He had started showing her some techniques to get her strength back a lot faster. After that they went for something to eat and ended up spending the whole day in the city talking. Bot really about personal stuff they both didn't really feel ready for that but it was nice nevertheless. They had needed that, being together, talking without fearing to say or do something wrong that might upset the other. But Max also hadn't forgotten about that fact that this day was now over and that meant one day less to spend with her.

"I think I better get into my room…good night Mrs Parker, night Liz."

He didn't know where this feeling came from but he felt the need to kiss her and so he did - only on the cheek but he needed to. Honestly he missed the closeness already although the hadn't been close that often. Well okay - Kyle's and Vicky had 'nearly' gotten as close as possible but since then nothing serious really had happened. What had happened to he cold, calculating Casanova who could have any woman he wanted without turning back afterwards? Liz happened - within a short time she had accomplished to make a new man out of him and as surprising as it was it was even more a wonder that he liked it. That was also something he was afraid of, he liked his new self but back on Antar he would be forced to turn into the untouchable prince again.

*****************
Nancy had watched the whole scene and how her daughter seemed to long for his touch. Liz had enjoy the kiss although short and not passionate but the fact that she had closed her eyes and had seemed to want his touch, perhaps even more. In that moment she knew that she had lost her daughter - not really lost, of course she knew that she could see her daughter even if she decided to go to Antar but she was a mother and she was afraid. Liz didn't know much about Antar and its people and nobody not even the king was able to predict how they would react to a queen not of their planet and not even of their galaxy.

"Everything okay Mum?"

Liz was worried seeing her mother so deep in thought. It hadn't been her intention to worry her but honestly she had a lot on her mind herself.

"Uhm…no not really. So did you have a nice day?"

"Yes, yes it was nice, I think we got know each other a lot better."

"That's nice."

Liz had decided not to tell anyone about her new developed abilities well not now and Max had promised to keep it a promise also. He had promised to help her as much as possible.

"Well Mum, I'm tired I think I better get to bed myself okay?"

"Okay, see you tomorrow. Good night, sleep tight."

"I will. Good night."

*****************
Entering the apartment she heard Max again in his room, humming.
Knocking on his door she waited for an answer but nothing happened. Slowly opening the door she found him again sitting on the floor like she had done days ago. Again she could see the blue sign on his forehead. It still fascinated her to see him meditating. Carefully, trying to not make a sound she sat down on his bed, watching him.
Some minutes later he opened his eyes and they were blue again, but not as light as the first time she had found him doing that. It was a darker but also brighter blue, he was staring at he without blinking. Liz was wondering if he even knew that she was here. Had he sensed her? Recognized her? And why were his eyes blue anyway? Was he able to see something?

"So many questions Elisabeth Parker, why don't you ask them out loud?"

What? What was that? He hadn't moved his mouth or had he - no! She sat up straight and was staring at her with big eyes. She knew that she definitely hadn't spoken and she also knew that he hadn't moved one fiber in his body for some minutes now.

"Liz look at me."

There it was again, his voice in her head.

Max sensed that she felt more and more uncomfortable with every second going by so he decided to come out of the state he was in now and really talk to her. He blinked, the room went dark as his eyes returned to normal again.

"I'm sorry Liz. It wasn't my intention to startle you."

"what was that Max? It was like you were in my head."

"I was. See when I'm in this state you just found me in my senses increase and so I was able to get into your head. Although I have to admit that it was now really easier as your slowly develop your abilities, it's a lot harder to get into a normal human head for example."

"Is there a chance to fight against this?"

"Yes there is. And there's a reason that I did just get into your head. Did you feel something when I got into your head?"

"No not really why?"

"Well on my planet there a lot of people whose special ability is just that, getting into other peoples heads and some don't really have good intentions…you can say that they're able to manipulate your mind. And I want you to learn to block them out - humans are not able to do that, luckily those experts on my planet do even have a much harder time getting into humans heads."

"Why would they do that?"

"There are so many reasons Liz."

He slowly got up from the floor and sat down on the bed in front of her taking her hands into his.

"But I think you have learned a lot today and you must be exhausted so why don't you go to bed and we talk about it tomorrow."

"Honestly I'm not really tired Max."

She looked at him and saw that he was smiling.

"That's good, because honestly I don't want you to go now."

He admitted huskily, feeling this strange sensation of excitement in his lower stomach.

"So uhm, this sign what is it and are you the only one who has it?"

While stroking her hands with his thumbs he started explaining.

"It's the royal sign and everybody in my family has it. It's within us, it's what makes you a member of the royal family."

"Okay so given the possibility that we would be bonded, then what about me? I mean I would be a member of the royal family also right?"

Max wasn't really surprised that Liz had asked this question, no matter how confusing the situation she seemed to always have a clear head.

"You'd get it through the bonding ceremony."

"Oh. Does it hurt?"

"Well they'll cut your head open and tattoo it onto your brain but you really shouldn't feel a thing."

Max had a hard time not to burst out laughing when he saw Liz' reaction. She had turned from normal to pale within seconds and her eyes had gotten even bigger, if that was possible.
Liz recovered from the shock again and took in his behavior. His eyes were gleaming and the corners of his lips were twitching.

"You…oh…I can't believe it…are you leading me on your majesty?"

She took the pillow next to her and attacked him with it.

"Never!"

Max screamed and started laughing, grabbing also a pillow to defend himself. They were both now laughing while Liz had managed to crawl onto Max' lap and attack him over and over again.

"Are you giving up?"

She chuckled, attacking him again.

"Never."

Max laughed, tears streaming down his cheeks from laughing so hard refusing to admit defeat. He totally took Liz off guard when he suddenly grabbed her by her hip and rolling them over so that he was on top of her.

"Question is…if you give up."

He whispered panting.

*****************

Part 41

Liz could feel her heart beating in her whole body, she had the feeling it could explode in the next second. Max’ intense stare made her even more giddy and excited.
Her body was screaming for his touch, his smell alone could drive her crazy. He shifted slightly taking the pillow away which was between them, then he slowly started stroking some tresses out of her face leaving his hands on the sides of her face. Gently touching her lips with his thumb he kept on staring into her eyes – those eyes which could bewitch him easily.
It was Liz now who took the initiative, moving her right hand to the nape of his neck and pulling him towards her, starting to kiss him carefully at first. It didn’t take long until Max started kissing Liz back, their tongues dancing their own little private dance. She let her hands glide over his bare torso, feeling the warmth coming off of his body. Max could feel Liz’ hand roaming over his body and this was driving him nearly nuts.

“Liz if you don’t stop I can’t promise you that I’ll be able to.”

He mumbled while kissing and biting her neck, opening one button after the other of her blouse. Hearing her moan encouraged him even more and made it even harder to stop.

“Who…uhm…wants you to stop?”

Was enough for him to remove the rest of her blouse at once and kiss his way down to her still covered breasts.
While he was busy caressing her, her hands found their way into his trousers moving over his butt over and over again before moving into his shorts.

“Oh gawd Liz…please you have to…uhm…god that feels good.”

Smirking for a short time Liz didn’t stop her movements, gasping when she felt his tongue around her navel.

(Guys I know you’ll hate me but I have to stop here and leave it to your imagination what exactly happened that night – but I just don’t believe that I’d write it as good as it’s supposed to be. So let’s just say that they ‘cemented’ their relationship okay? )

After they had made love Liz snuggled up to Max, fitting perfectly into the place between his arm and torso. Max was listening to her breathing, if she was sleeping but he knew she wasn’t, convinced that she was excited and maybe even as confused as he was he turned his face to her, looking straight into her eyes.

“How come that I had an exhausting day, an even more exhausting night and it’s five in the morning but I'm not tired?”

She whispered, drawing small circles on his chest with her finger.

“I dunno – honestly.”

Smiling at her he held her even tighter, pulling the blanket up and tugging them both in. Liz breathing was getting more even and before she finally fell asleep she murmured ‘I love you’. That made his heart ache, he was confused, relieved, excited, afraid and so much more at once.
This was new to him – never in his whole life had he experienced something like that – all the other times with his concubines and other women it had only been sex and after that he was happy when they left or the other way around. He had never felt the urgency to stay near to them – but with Liz again it was different and he surly would miss it back home. Fact was it hadn’t been sex they had made love – love – this word – it seemed to play a more important role with every day going by, with every day spending on Earth and being around Liz. Slowly drifting also into a world of dreams Max held his mate close – promising to himself that he would do everything in his power to keep her.

It was Liz who woke up six hours later. She had turned around in her sleep and felt her back now pressing against Max’ bare chest and the rest of his naked body. He felt so good, smelled so good – this was home no matter where and on which planet. She knew in her heart that she belonged here and although he might be the prince and soon a king a certain sense of possessiveness came over her. No he belonged to her and only her – his heart was in her hands, she knew it, he had confessed just that in the throes of passion while they had made love several times in the night. Carefully because she didn’t want to wake him she started caressing his forearm which held her tight. His breathing changed and he started stirring and then she felt his breath right next to her ear and heard his voice murmuring a very tired ‘Good morning’.

“Morning – did you sleep well?”

“I think it was the first time that I really slept well here on Earth.”

He chuckled, moving his hand over her stomach, circling around her navel.

“I think I could get used to waking up like that.”

“But isn’t that unusual for an Antarian?”

“Well it is but I like the human way better.”

He rolled her over so that she was facing him now and kissed her in the top of her nose, taking in her morning appearance.

“You’re so beautiful I hope you know that.”

“Well I think you mentioned it.”

She laughed pressing herself even tighter to his body, stroking his rough cheek with hers. They both didn’t hear the apartment door opening and someone calling for them. Only when the door opened and a totally perplexed Michael stood there and shouted

“Oh God –I’m so…uhm sorry…I…”

they realized that they weren’t alone anymore.

*****************

Michael had opened the door to Liz’ and Max’ apartment nobody had seen them or heard of them since yesterday or better since Liz’ mother had talked to them and they all started to worry that maybe not everything was as good as those two wanted everybody to believe.

“Liz? Max are you here?”

Nothing – nobody was in the living room or kitchen.

“Max?”

Opening the door to the room Max was supposed to live in he didn’t hear the laughing and realized too late that there actually was somebody there – but not somebody – Max and Liz – naked and very intimate.

“Oh God – I’m so…uhm sorry…I…think I better go now, leave you two alone and get this picture out of my head.”

He mumbled stumbling out of the room and back into the living room.

“What is it Michael have you found them? I can’t reach Liz on her cell she must have disconnected it.”

Maria came into the apartment. Taking in Michael’s shocked expression she got really worried.

“Michael?”

“Yeah I’ve found them Maria just…leave them alone for a bit okay?”

“Why? But they’re okay aren’t they?”

“OH YES – don’t worry they’re fine believe me.”

In that moment Max and Liz decided to come out of Max’ room both wearing not really that much. In fact Liz was wearing one of Max’ shirts and a short while Max was only clad in a short.

“Uhm…what happened here? We were worried about you two…what did you…..OH MY GOD!”

Maria suddenly stopped her babbling and shrieked running towards Liz, hugging her and pulling her with her into Liz’ room.

“You’ve got to tell me everything Liz!”

*****************
Michael and Max were left alone in the living room.

“Listen Max I’m sorry…”

“Forget it Michael…I’m sure there was nothing you haven’t seen already.”

“Oh well I wouldn’t say that – I mean seeing your future queen naked is not really a part of the royal protocol or is it? Have you two talked about it?”

“No and please stop asking I’ll let you know when there’s something new to tell okay?”

“So you two…uhm…uh…got closer…that I can tell.”

Michael was a little inhibited, this was a really awkward situation. Seeing Zan fooling around with women and getting satisfied was one thing but seeing him caring for – even worshipping a woman was something totally new.

“So out of curiosity and you don’t have to answer but it worked right?”

“What - it?”

“Uhm…the act itself. Don’t make it so hard Zan.”

Max chuckled. Michael was totally embarrassed and this was a rare thing so he really should enjoy it while it lasted.

“Of course it did…why shouldn’t it?”

“But it worked because she has antarian genes.”

“Why would you care?”

Seeing Michael turning crimson red Max figured out why Michael was asking all of this questions. Oh this was fun!

“Oh I see, Maria – so you two are getting closer?”

He didn’t need an answer - watching Michael fidgeting was enough of one.

“Well Michael – I’ve to tell you that Antarians and humans have no problem ‘consummating’ if you want to put it that way and I know what I’m talking about because I already had a round with a 100% human.”

“What? When did you do that? Who? Does Liz know? Why didn’t you tell me?”

“Because you don’t need to know everything about my sex life, you might be my best friend but you don’t need to know everything. I think Liz knows, she knows who it was and it was in the first week I was here. It is very easy because getting them into the mood is easy, done with that it’s even easier to get into their head and have fun with them.”

“I hope you’re not talking about Liz here also?”

Max got serious.

“No – no with Liz it was totally different. I’m sure it really has something to do with those feelings and everything…strange but nice a lot nicer than what I had experienced until now. I can only advise you to find out on your own and that’s the last thing I’m telling you – I can’t believe that I even talked about it a bit.”

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:23:04 AM
Part 42

Maria had closed the door behind her best friend.

“Okay so now spill, what happened? Why are you wearing his clothes? Coming out of his room in your apartment and why does Michael look like he had seen a ghost?”

“As if you don't know Maria – if you expect me to tell you what happened then I have to disappoint you – I won't.”

Liz was really enjoying this – god she felt like she could fly.

“Liz – I can’t believe this you two really did it…I mean that’s obvious – so ho was it?”

“MARIA!”

“No not …uhm…don’t worry I don’t want any details but there didn’t occur some strange things or did there?”

“Do you think I would be standing here if they did?”

“No, no you’re right…oh chica I’m so happy for you.”

Maria hugged her best friend. She after all had known from the beginning that those two belonged together, that they were made for each other. She didn’t need to learn about all this destiny and matching crap she had known from the beginning on.

“Thank you Maria.”

*****************
The days went by quickly and before they knew the first week was over. Max and Liz had spent the days practicing Liz’ abilities and getting to know each other even better, the nights were spent together as well.

They were lying in bed, facing each other, glancing into each other’s eyes.

“Do you want me to go with you?”

Liz whispered, they hadn’t talked about it but she had made her decision, she’d go with him and she wanted to use the next week to prepare everything for her leave

“There’s nothing in this world I want more.”

He admitted finally after contemplating to tell her that he’d go alone. The better half won and he was as honest as possible.

“I…I know that it’s selfish of me and that I shouldn’t really think like that but I don’t want to lose you, you’re mine and I want you to be mine forever.”

He then added tracing her lips with his forefinger.

“I know what you mean…”

Liz interrupted her sentence to smile at him and kiss his finger before continuing.

“…I feel the same. I’ll go with you Zan there’s nothing I want more in this world.”

“Really? But what if you’ll regret it? What if …”

“Shshsh…”

Silencing him with putting her finger to his lips she moved closer.

”We don’t know what the future will hold but I’m willing to try to make a future worth living for if you’re too.”

“I am.”

He nodded slightly, kissing her on the forehead, pulling her closer. So many thing were going around in his head. He had to contact his parents that he would bring his wife – not his mate his wife, she was too strong a woman to be treated like anything else. They had to prepare the bonding ceremony and their rooms and they had to assign an adviser who’d help her getting to know Antar.

“I love you Elisabeth Parker.”

“I love you too. What are you thinking?”

“They we have only one week to get married and what other things have to be arranged here and on Antar before we leave and…”

“What did you just say?”

Liz interrupted his speech by sitting up and watching him carefully.

“I said that things have to be arranged…”

“No before that.”

It was clear to him that she had heard him talking about ‘marriage’ it was the least thing he could do – marrying her the human way on Earth and getting bonded on Antar – that way they would have the blessings of both their worlds. It would be the first marriage between an Antarian and a human and he wanted to make it right.

“I…know that this might sound stupid and I honestly have no idea how humans propose but uhm…would you marry me Liz Parker?”

He finally also sat up and took her hands into his- The moonlight was the only light shining but it illuminated the room enough to see her reaction to his world.

“I want to make that right, it’s a new path we’re both going and I want to get married to you here on Earth and bonded on Antar.”

Liz was stunned she had expected everything but that – how had she gotten so lucky? Not realizing that she was making him uncomfortable by her silence she started smiling from one ear to the other.

“So…what will it be?”

“Yes…yes I want to marry you was there any doubt?”

Throwing herself at him, her arms around his neck attacking him with thousands of kisses she mumbled one ‘yes’ and ‘I love you’ after the other. Max felt as if his heart was to burst how could she make him even happier?

“So if we want to pull this through I think we better start planning don’t you think?”

He laughed when he realized that she wouldn’t let go of him. She was lying on top of Max, kissing his jaw line.

“I think you’re right – oh my god I have to call Maria.”

She grabbed the phone and started dialing when Max came up behind her taking the phone out of her hand.

”I think…”

nibbling at her earlobe

“…you can save that call and just walk up to Michael’s room. I’m pretty sure that she’s there.”

“Mhm…d…do…do you really think that?”

She moaned moving her hand into his hair.

“Oh yes I’m pretty sure of that…o you could just wait until tomorrow.”

“No…can’t do…she’d kill me if I don’t tell her at once.”

Max turned her around so that he could kiss her properly, lifting her up Liz put her legs around his waist holding on tight, while they were kissing and Max carrying her back to the bed.

“I think (kiss) she’ll also (kiss) kill you (kiss) if you (kiss) disturb her now. (long kiss) and if she doesn’t Michael will do it.”

“I like the way you’re displaying your arguments.”

“Really? That’s funny cuz I like displaying them like that.”

Max smirked deepening his kiss and making her forget about Maria and Michael and everything else around them.

*****************

Part 43

“So tell me how did you know Maria would be with Michael?”

Liz asked Max after they had told everybody about their plans and were on their way into the city.

“Oh please it was so obvious Liz…the last days him and her had spent most of the day together and…let me put it that way if Michael wants something he can be very convincing and it didn’t look like as if Maria was unhappy with it. “

Liz thought about it and he was definitely right – Maria was happy and that was the most important thing.

“But what will happen when he’ll leave to Antar again Max? I mean I don’t want her to get hurt.”

Max got quiet but kept on walking. That’s also something I thought about – honestly I don’t have an answer to that. Fact is she’s 100% human that means she can’t come to Antar and live there – only for a short period of time with the weekly injection but we don’t recommend to take it longer than four weeks and after that she’d have to go back to Earth and stay there for at least a month again to get the remains of the drug out of her system. But I can’t lose Michael either, he’s my second in command and the only one I trust.”

No Liz was also quiet. There had to be a way not only because if this would work out Maria could join her on Antar and she wouldn’t be alone but also because Maria seemed happy.

“There has to be a way Max.”

“Well why don’t you little scientist make it your task to find a way when you’re on Antar?”

He wrapped his arms around her waist and looked into her eyes.

“Really? You think I could do that? Don’t you think it would be strange and what would your people think?”

“Why would you care what they think? I know that I won’t be able to hold you back and it’s not my intention to do so. My father wants me to change the rules – well first rule is that also the queen is allowed to be intelligent and therefore might do as she pleases and if this ends with you searching for a way to make it possible for your people to live on Antar then so be it.”

Liz smiled at him and gave him a gentle kiss.

“Have you contacted your father already by the way?”

“No – I delegated that task to Michael while I told my sister to tell our father in her own that she won’t return to Antar.”

“I still think that this isn’t a good idea Max, what if something happens?”

“Well it’s her decision and if something happens I can only hope that it won’t be that bad and that she’ll learn something out of it and either return home or be more careful.”

They kept on walking. There was a lot they had to prepare for the wedding. Maria had insisted on calling Kyle and Vicky who were on their honeymoon but when they heard that Max and Liz would marry there was nothing that could hold back Kyle from coming. Of course he had to promise to his wife that he would make it up to her but the fact that Liz was marrying an Antarian and everything was just too exciting for him and then he couldn’t sit still anyway after hearing those news.

*****************
Telio was running as fast as possible after being contacted by his king. It was important that was sure, the urgency was clear. He was only hoping that nothing had happened to the prince. Although Zan was arrogant he honored him…after all he had seen him grow up. Entering the room and bowing in front of his king he was waiting for his instructions.

“Telio – at ease.”

The king smiled, okay so that was a good sign right. A smiling king was goo…uhm…strange.why would he smile?

“My son Zan will be coming back in seven days, h’ll join me at the convention on Dendar. He’ll bring his mate and the bonding ceremony will be held one day after their arrival.”

“His mate you majesty but I thought…”

Telio was confused…wasn’t Zan supposed to get bonded with someone out of hi people?

“Telio, a lot of things will change when Zan gets back…yes he’s bringing his mate, his wife because he intends to marry her on Earth before coming here one day before they leave Earth. The queen and myself will attend this human ceremony and return after that. Please make sure that Liz will have her rooms ready.

“Sure I will Sir…which rooms do you have in mind?”

“The west wing still has free rooms right?”

“Yes but isn’t that prince Zan’s wing?”

“That’s right…Telio. Are you questioning my decisions?”

“I would never dare your majesty it’s just surprising.”

The king was smiling even more now and looking straight into the servants eyes, something he rarely did.

“I know…but as I just mentioned there will be a lot of changes. Oh and could you please sent Amaron my adviser in. He will have to prepare a proclamation that Zan will get bonded and that princess Vilandra has left the planet indefinitely.”

“Excuse my Sir that I’m asking but why would she do that?”

“Well she’s mad at m and therefore wants to stay on Earth and besides that I think she found a nice young man. I’m sure he’ll take care of her, Zan wouldn’t leave her behind if he wouldn’t feel comfortable. That will be all – thank you Telio.”

Bowing again and retreating from the room Telio ran as fast as possible to contact Amaron and spread the news. These were really some news – oh boy!

*****************
Max, Liz, Michael, Maria, Alex and Isabelle were sitting in a restaurant celebrating the upcoming wedding.

“This is unbelievable, I still can’t believe that you’re going to leave me to get bonded on another planet Liz.”

Maria was again near tears, Michael wrapped an arm around her trying to comfort her. Over the last days he had learned to like her more and more which had ended with them sleeping together last night. Max had been right, it as something different, something new.

“I know Maria but you’ll be able to visit me when ever you want you know that.”

“And we’re leaving you a communicator so that you two can always talk.”

Max threw in, feeling sorry for Maria – also a new feeling – sympathy. If he’d stay longer on this planet he’d turn into a wuss.

“But that isn’t the same.”

Maria whined trying to get herself together again.

“So what did my father say?”

Max asked Michael, taking a sip from his cherry coke mixed with Tabasco.

“He said he and your mother will come to the ceremony and return to Antar after it, you’re expected back in seven days, then you’ll join your father for the convention where he’ll announce your upcoming bonding. Aforementioned bonding will be held one day later.”

“Good, what about the sleeping arrangements? Did he say something about this?”

“No he wasn’t all surprised by this, he just said that this will lead to a lot of confusion but it’s okay, he had counted on that. Liz will get the other rooms in your wing.”

“Fine.”

Max nodded, taking Liz’ hand under the table, squeezing it to assure her that everything was going to be fine. She looked a little scared.

“And what about you sis?”

“What about me?”

Vilandra asked surprised by the softness in her brother’s voice. All the other times they had talked since she had mentioned that she was going to stay on Earth he had been harsh and angry.

“What did father say?”

“He asked me if I was sure and that he won’t order me back if it isn’t necessary and that he hopes that I know what I do.”

“That’s it? Wow…the old man surprises me more and more.”

“ZAN!”

Rath and Vilandra shouted horrified

“What I mean c’mon he IS old and I’m his son I’m allowed to say that.”

Maria, Alex, Liz and Max chuckled

“Why woudn’t you be allowed to say it anyway?”

Alex asked, shaking his head slightly after taking a sip. This again shocked everybody around him – he didn’t know?

“You don’t know do you?”

Maria asked with a smirk on her face.

“I don't know what?”

Alex was looking forth and back between everybody. Liz was shortly watching Max who had a hard time to hide his smile.

“Will somebody please tell me what’s going on here?”

“May I?”

Maria asked and shifting up to Alex who seemed more lost than ever before. She lay one arm around Alex’ shoulder and began.

“Do you see that handsome man sitting there Alex? Holding our best friend’s had under the table and marrying her after only knowing each other for hardly a month?”

Alex nodded, intrigued by Maria’s babbling.

“Well he’s not only an alien if you want to put it that way, no he’s the crown prince of the V – constellation – galaxy, better known as prince Zan, crown prince to mentioned galaxy. Talking about before mentioned wedding - that all makes our dear Liz Parker future queen of this galaxy. To cut a long story short, Zan’s father is the king and that’s why your friend Vilandra princess of Antar and Rath, Zan’s second in command were a little bit shocked about this comment.”

Alex didn’t say a word, he was just shocked – he had been lied to the whole time.

Max was sensing what Alex was thinking so before he had a chance to say something Max apologized.

“Listen Alex, I’m sorry that we tell you but we wanted it like that okay? We were sent here to get to know the human way of life and how were we supposed to do that if you had known about our royal status? Please don’t be angry okay?”

“You could have said something.”

Alex then accepted the apology but still felt a little bit hurt.

“We’re really sorry Alex.”

Liz emphasized her apology.

“Does Kyle know about all of this?”

“No he doesn’t and I’d like to keep it that way until the wedding.”

Max smiled.

“Oh there’s one question I have about the wedding though.”

Maria propped her head on one hand and was looking at Max with big eyes.

“What is it?”

“What will be Liz’ name after the wedding? I mean do you have a surname like we do?”

Vilandra was the one who gave the answer to that.

“No we don’t but Zan’s title is actually ‘crown prince to Antar and the whole V – constellation – galaxy, royal by descent, son of Ericen and Sobina’ that’s our parents by the way.”

“Wow that’s a very long title – do all of you have those long titles?”

Alex asked, this was really interesting after all he now knew why he always had had the feeling that there was something royal about Max.

“No not everybody it’s depending on your class.”

Michael explained to him. Then finally the dinner arrived they all went back to talk about the wedding. Leaving Maria, Liz and Alex to their own thoughts about the aftermath of this whole wedding – bonding thingy.

*****************

Part 44

The queen was meeting with Telio after he had finished preparing Zan’s wing for his return.

“How are you feeling your majesty?”

“A lot better now that I know that my son will be coming home and bring his mate.”

“I’m still a little shocked to be honest – I would have never thought tha Zan would bond with a human.”

“Well yeah, I think the king had his plans and reasons. Is everything ready for their arrival?”

“Sure it is – I hope that she will like it. Do you know her?”

It sometimes amazed Telio that his relationship to his queen had been the same ever since they got to know each other, when they were both still children.

“No but his majesty does, I’ll get to know her tomorrow.”

“I was wondering – what will be her task? What will she do while Zan will be with your husband – do they know about the upcoming trips to the other planets and galaxies?”

“No – I don’t think that they know. Her task would be to get pregnant and stay back but…the king has mentioned that a lot of things are going to change so I don’t know what will happen. We’ll have to see and wait.”

“Ho do you treat a human?”

Telio started wondering, he had read about this race but had never really cared about them that much.

“She’ll have to learn how we behave on Antar Telio – after all she’s supposed to be the queen someday…I think we will need a lot of patience with her.”

Of course the queen would never admit that she was as afraid and also anxious as everybody else. A human - why couldn’t her son dislike this woman his father had picked out for him so many years ago. Well it wasn’t his father – it had been destiny but – she still had her doubts. Besides that she was worrying about her daughter who had decided to stay back on Earth. This was all too much for her to take in, too fast and she couldn’t do a thing.

*****************
Kyle met Alex, Max and Michael in the city.

“Hey you – I guess we can’T leave you alone or can we? How did you do that Evans?”

“How did I do what?”

Max asked Kyle.

“How did you convince Liz to marry you I mean wow – and how will you two live? I mean you’re antarian, she’s human – she can’t stay on your planet so I gues you’ll have to stay here right?”

“Nope.”

Max was shaking his head, Alex eyes were sparkling he had begged that he wanted to fill Kyle in on the facts – nit everything of course the big bomb would be telling Kyle that he’d attend the wedding of the crown prince of Antar.

“No? Okay what did I miss?”

“Kyle you’ve missed a lot while you were on your honeymoon – I’m sure you had a great time but – let’s put it that way – you left Boston and nearly hell broke loose. It took me also a little bit to take the whole story in so I think you better sit down will you?”

And how right he was, after Alex had learned that Liz was going to marry the crown prince of Antar many questions had popped up and it had taken the other the whole night to explain everything to him about Jeff Parker’s and the kings friendship, Liz birth and her condition etc..

“You have to know that our Liz had antarian genes and before you ask – nobody knows how it really happened. Fact is that she’s able to live on both planets Earth and Antar. They’ll get married tomorrow and after that they’ll leave for Antar.”

“I wow – and…I mean what about your bonding thing and don’t you have a mate on your planet Max? Would the king allow that?”

Max and Michael weren’t really surprised that Kyle had all those questions after all he had never made a mystery out of the fact that he was an absolute Antar- maniac. Max had discussed this with Liz and the others and he would invite Kyle and everybody else who wanted to join for the bonding.

“Well for some reason Liz is my 100% match and even the king can’t deny this fact Kyle so he approves of it.”

“Wow – but so fast – you must have good connections to him if everything can happen so fast.”

“You can say that.”

Michael smirked. He liked this Kyle-guy.

“So Liz will come with you to Antar and what will she do there? I mean I know that women on your planet are treated very differently from ours – do you think she’ll be able to cope with that? After all she’s a very strong and independent woman – stubborn nevertheless – do you really think that this can work out? And what about children? Are you planning on some and if yes what will the be like? Antarian? Human?”

Kyle kept on asking and asking and asking. Michael and Max tried to answer every question as accurate as possible without giving away too much.
He had a point – Max and Liz hadn’t talked about children yet. It was his task to reproduce and he didn’t even know if this was possible. Only because she had the genes now didn’t mean that this would also enable them to have children. He had to talk to his healer on Antar about that as soon as he got back.

“So you’re also going back to Antar Michael? And Isabelle? I’ll miss you guys, I'm sorry that we couldn’t spend that much time together.”

Kyle said, he really felt sorry but also for himself. Here he was getting to know Antarians and they’d leave again.

“Well actually Isabelle is staying on Earth. She had an argument with our father and refuses now to return. Luckily my father allowed it and so she stays as long as she wants to.”

Max explained to Kyle – evoking some hope in him.

“And I’m coming back after the bonding ceremony for some days…so I’ll be around.”

Starting to smile Kyle felt a lot better. There was still so much he wanted to learn about this planet.

“This hasn’t something to do with someone special or does it?”

Alex now teased Michael, whose ears turned crimson red. All guys started to laugh but also immediately starting to think what their girls were doing, hoping that they’d also have a great night.

*****************
Maria, Isabelle, Vicky and Liz were at the other end of the city enjoying a delicious dinner. Vicky was talking about her honeymoon, she seemed so happy.

“Will you go on a honeymoon Liz?”

Maria wondered after Vicky had finished her story.

”Well…I…I don’t know if they do have that on Antar. Do you Isabelle?”

“No…no we don’t I guess that’s the problem with our people not knowing how to have fun. Usually after getting bonded the couple retreats to a room, finishing their bond and returns to either celebrate or work again. Usually only royal families celebrate a new bond.”

“What do you mean by saying the ‘finish their bond’?”

Maria asked curious. Vicky and Liz who had their suspicions started giggling and Isabelle was pondering how to say it the easiest way without sounding too callous.

“They…have sex and order to reproduce…90% of our population was conceived on this occasion.”

“OH…oh…well that…uhm…sound…really…

‘romantic’ wouldn’t even justify the sarcasm Maria was intending to use.

“…awful. Oh my god…so unromantic and…urgh. Liz are you sure you want to go through with that?”

Now all the other girls were laughing, Maria was really hilarious.

“Calm down Maria I’m sure that everything will be different with Max and Liz. My father had made it clear that he wants them to change a lot and this would be a good opportunity to start with…right Liz? I still can’t believe that you’ll be my sister soon.”

Liz smiled and that comment. What had happened to the Ice-princess?

“Well I like the idea too unfortunately you have decided to leave me to my destiny alone. Are you sure you want to stay here?”

Isabelle wasn’t in the mood to argue with anybody about it again. She had made a decisions and it was now up to the others to accept that. After all she had agreed to travel back with them for the bonding and return with Michael, Maria and Alex to Earth. Vicky still didn’t know about the surprise that Kyle and her were also invited for the bonding ceremony and because they had to cut their honeymoon short Zan would invite them to be their guests in the palace. It would also help Liz getting adjusted to Antar easier because she wouldn’t be alone and with Kyle she had a human with her who knew a lot about Antar and antarian life.

“I’m wondering what the guys are doing now.”

Vicky giggled.

“A long as they don’t drink it’s fine with me.”

Liz laughed remembering how the last bachelor’s party had ended with Michael and Max getting drunk after one small sip of liquor, opening up as an effect of it but forgetting everything after sobering up. No she needed a sober Max tomorrow who could remember that he wanted to marry her. How would he react to her and the whole situation tomorrow? Liz was lost in her own world. She was picturing Max wearing a tux – he looked so damn hot in those. Would he like her dress? After all there hadn’t been that much time to get a decent one, but she loved it. It was simple but elegant. Oh how she wished that tomorrow would be there already, as stupid as it sounded because it also meant that her departure wouldn’t be that far away but she wanted Max to be hers.

*****************

The guys were walking down the street when suddenly they heard somebody shouting “Alex! Kyle!” turning around Max had to see that it was this Jordan – idiot.

“Who’s that?”

Michael asked, seeing his best friend only rolling his eyes. Oh this could be interesting.

“Jordan hey, long time no see. How are you?”

Kyle tried to be friendly, he knew that Jordan had a crush on Liz for years now and a confrontation was hardly avoidable if he’d allow Max and Jordan to get into an argument about Liz.

“Good, why are you back already? Aren’t you supposed to be on your honeymoon?”

“Well yeah, something came up.”

“Something? Hey Alex.”

“Jordan.”

Alex nodded, he also had a bad feeling about this. He saw how Jordan was watching Max who was talking to Michael hardly taking account of him. Well he had to give it to Max – he was doing the right thing.

“Still here Evans? When are you going back home?”

Jordan then asked, aggressiveness obvious in his voice.

“Why would you care Jordan? But I’ve got good news for you, I’ll be leaving in two days.”

“Really, it’s about that time!”

Jordan took a few steps and was now standing in front of Max, facing him with angry eyes.

“Well I hate to break it to you Jordan, if you think that after I leave you’ll have Liz for yourself again – something that you didn’t even do before I was here if I may mention that, but Liz and I are going to marry tomorrow and I’ll take her with me. So face it Jordan – you have no chance.”

“You’ve got to be kidding me! Do you really think that I believe all that bullshit that you just said? Hoe dumb do you think am I? Liz would never marry someone she doesn’t know.”

“Wrong again Jordan, we know each other, in fact we love each other and that’s why we’re getting married – people do that when they’re in love right?”

Jordan was at a loss of words. This Evans guy must be joking. His Liz? HIS LIZ?

“Kyle? Alex?”

Both were avoiding his eyes and that only made it clear that Max wasn’t joking after all.

“YOU BASTARD! LIZ WAS SUPPOSED TO MARRY ME! SHE’S MINE!”

Jordan suddenly attacked Max, squeezing his neck until Max could hardly breathe. No matter what the others were trying they couldn’t get Jordan of Max, he was too strong, too furious.

“Let…go…of…me!”

Max said with the last bit of his breath.

“Guys better get back this could get ugly.”

Michael suddenly realized what Max’ intention was when he moved his hand over Jordan’s chest. Kyle and Alex were terrified – what would happen next? Luckily they were in a side street where no one really saw them.
The next thing knew was seeing a flash of blue light and Jordan flying through the air, landing at the other side of the street. Max was getting up from the ground, his hand, which had been glowing returning to normal.

“Did you kill him?”

Michael asked his friend, who was more than just angry – oh boy this was bad he had promised himself he would never want to see this kind of expression on Max’ face.

“It would have been easy to do that and I promise there’s nothing more I want to do but no – he’s alive.”

“What the hell was that?”

Jordan coughed holding his head.

“That my friend was a warning, if you ever touch me or Liz again you’ll regret it, you now know what I’m capable of Jordan so be a smart guy and stay way.”

And with that he and Michael went off, followed by Kyle and Alex who felt really intimidated by what they just had seen, deciding that it was better to have Max as a friend and never annoying him.

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:25:13 AM
Part 45

“Had that been necessary?”

Michael asked Max on their way back to Alex’ car.

“Yes – Liz is mine and I had to make that clear to him.”

“Why I mean you’ll be leaving to Antar anyway and I doubt that he’ll get there one day.”

Michael had a hard time understanding Max intention – of course he could understand that he had to defend himself – that was out of the question but this possessiveness was something new to him.

“Liz is mine and I want everybody to know that.”

“There’s no doubt about it bro’.”

Max knew that Michael was right but when he had seen Jordan a strange feeling had overcome him.

“Okay guys we’ll see you tomorrow, try to get some sleep see you.”

Alex said after stopping the car in front of the Parker’s house.

“And don’t forget no peaking! Michael you make sure that Maxie-boy gets straight to his room. Bad luck isn’t what those two need, they’ll have a lot of other problems coming their way.”

“I’ll make sure of that Alex, thanks again and see you tomorrow.”

*****************
Maria had spent the night at Liz’, the girls had been chatting, laughing and also crying through the night. It was early morning when Nancy Parker knocked and opened the door.

“Hey you two girls – how are you?”

“Fine Mrs. Parker, how are you?”

“Fine, may I have some minutes alone with my daughter Maria?”

“Sure.”

And with that Maria left Liz’ room and went into the kitchen where she found Michael pouring some coffee into a cup.

“May I have one also?”

Surprised to hear her voice he looked up. Maria’s appearance was lovely, her hair was a little bit a mess and she wore only a green tank top with white shorts.

“Morning.”

He smiled at her leaning down to give her a kiss, taking another cup and pouring her also a cup of coffee.

“So how is loverboy?”

Maria asked, holding the cup up to her lips. God, how she had missed Michael last night. How was she supposed to live a life without him after he’d leave her again?

“He’s as fine as can be…how is Liz doing?”

“Well the same…I still can’t believe that she’s going to get married today.”

Laughing, Michael was shaking his head. What was he supposed to say, after all his best friend came here only one month ago and back then he had been a total different person. It was still amazing him how much he had changed within thjis short time.

“Michael I was wondering about something.”

Picking up the seriousness in Maria’s voice he sat his cup down and watched her.

“What is it?”

“I…I hope I get this out right…I…you know that Liz is my best friend and I can promise you that I’m going to miss her dearly but what I was wondering is – what will Liz’ life be on Antar? Will Max be able to be there for her? I don't doubt that he loves her, you know that I believe in their love but I fear that she might have a really hard time.”

“I…honestly Maria I don’t know what her life will be like on Antar – it was easy on Earth for Max to behave like a human but back on Antar he has his responsibilities and the people there are totally different. I think that he’ll make sure that she feels as comfortable as possible but I'm also sure that she’ll have a hard time getting adjusted.”

“Will you help her? When you get back to Antar I mean?”

“Me? Maria I…”

“Please promise me Michael that when you get back that you’ll be the one she can rely on and come to if she has a problem and she can’t talk to Max. I won’t be able to be there for her. I would feel a lot better to know that she has a friend there. Please.”

“Okay, yes, yes I’ll be there for her.”

“Thank you.”

Maria put her cup away and walked up to Michael, hugging him. Michael held her tight, he was moved by her faith in him.

*****************
Liz was coming out of the bathroom expecting Maria in her room. She was surprised to see her mother standing in front of her closet admiring her wedding dress.

“It’s beautiful Liz.”

“Mum, I didn’t know that you’re here.”

“I wanted to talk to you – alone.”

Liz nodded, drying her hair with a towel and then sitting down on her bed, watching her mother.

“I…I know that I wasn’t the easiest to deal with the last couple of days and even weeks. You have to believe me Liz that it wasn’t my intention to hurt you but it isn’t easy to see you baby girl growing up, falling in love so fast and getting married today. I…I know that you love him, you wouldn’t leave all of this behind if you didn’t do, I just wanted to let know that no matter what will happen you can always count on us to be there for you. You’ll always be my little girl and not some queen of a far away planet. And no get dressed and knock them all down especially that handsome groom of yours will you.”

“Thanks Mum.”

Liz got up and hugged her mother. It had been important to get her mother’s approval finally.

“Are his parents already here?”

“Your father is meeting the king and queen in Cambridge.”

“Okay then let’s get started.”

*****************

Max, Michael and Alex were approaching the church.

“Geez what’s going on here? So many reporters?”

Alex asked, Max and Michael also were a bit worried. Until now it had been possible for them to not give their real identities away but somehow someone had heard about the wedding.
Kyle and Vicky were coming towards them.

“What’s going on Max?”

“I guess the media has somehow heard about the fact that there’ll be an antarian and human wedding. Damn.”

This wasn’t planned he had hoped that he could be as invisible as possible but this seemed impossible now.

Jeff Parker walked up to him.

“How are you doing Zan?”

“Uhm, fine I guess…what are doing all those people here?”

“Well…word spread from Antar to Earth that you’re going to marry a human. And when they heard that the king and queen would attend the wedding…”

“WHAT?”

Everyone turned to Kyle who had paled within seconds.

“You…y…you mean the antarian king is attending this wedding?”

He shrieked. Jeff was a bit confused…didn’t Kyle know who had been talking to when talking to Zan?

“Well yes…I mean Kyle after all his…”

but before Jeff could finish the sentence a black limousine stopped in front of them, the door opened out the king himself appeared. Everybody was looking back and forth between Kyle and his majesty this could get really funny. Kyle’s eyes got bigger and bigger, he started sweating and shaking. Unfortunately the moment was interrupted by the queen who walked up to her son.

“Zan, my son…you look good, your hair – so short it suit you. How are you doing?”

“I’m fine mother, thank you for coming this means a lot to me.”

Then he turned to his father, bowing slightly.

“Father.”

“Son, I’m really proud of you.”

“Thank you, your majesty, may I introduce you to some people who I made friends here on Earth.”

He walked up to Alex, Kyle and Vicky. While his parents followed him, Michael bowed to the royal couple.

“Father, mother may I introduce to you Mr Alex Whitman, Mr Kyle Valenti and his new wedded wife Vicky Valenti. Kyle is a big fan of our planet and he really impressed me with his knowledge about us and our culture. Alex, Kyle and Vicky, my parents king Ericen and his queen Sobina.”

Alex smiled at them and bowed.

“Your highnesses I’m very delighted to get to know you.”

“The pleasure is all ours Mr Whitman.”

The king nodded and turned to the couple. Kyle was opening his mouth but somehow he had forgotten how to talk, it was a wonder that he was still breathing. Vicky knew that and spoke up for both of them.

“We’re also very delighted to meet you, especially my husband who’s near a heart attack right now so would you please excuse us. I think he needs sometime alone.”

And with that she lead Kyle away while the other were laughing. Only the king and queen didn’t really get the joke.

“So…what do you say? Let’s get married?!”

Alex clapped his hands and lead Max into the church, always aware of the fact that they were filmed and taken photos of. The others followed them and took their seats.

*****************
“OH my god, look so many reporters, Liz what’s going on here?”

Maria asked astounded when they arrived at the church.

”I don’t know Maria and I’ve other problems now. I’m getting married…oh my god…Maria?”

“Liz?”

“I can’t do this!”

“WHAT?”

All the women shouted.

“I…what if he gets bored? What if I can’t give him the love he needs? What if I fail him? What am I doing here? I’m only a human girl - little Liz Parker – I can’t marry the crown prince of a whole galaxy.”

Liz started hyperventilating in front of her mother, best friend and soon sister-in-law.

“Okay, okay chica – look at me.”

Maria took Liz’ face in her hands and started into her eyes.

“Breath in and breath out, breath in…c’mon Liz, breath with me.”

Although Liz found this rather ridiculous because this wasn’t solving her problems she started breathing with Maria.

“Good – now tell me. Do you love him?”

A nod.

“Do you want him to be yours forever?”

A second nod.

“Do you think that he loves you and that you’re the only woman in this world and god knows which other worlds too?”

A third nod.

“Fine – then do you want to marry him?”

Nodding.

“GOOD then what the hell are you waiting for, get in that church there and tie the knot chica! If you’re still sitting in this damn car in 10 seconds I’ll kick you out of it and drag you there on my own.”

Liz wanted to cry so she flung herself into her best friends arms and whispered.

“You’re the best ‘Ria, what would I do with out you?”

“Well you wouldn’t get married today and that’s for sure so shall we?”

After that the women got out of the car and went straight into the church not caring about the photographers and camera teams who all wanted to interview the first human who was going to marry an Antarian and in this special case the crown prince himself.

*****************

Part 46

It was quiet in the church, Zan was standing in front of the priest. They had been lucky that Liz’ priest who had also baptized her so many years ago was willing to marry them after hearing the whole story. Liz had feared that he might say no – after all Zan wasn’t religious and he wasn’t a human and not from this planet but luckily Pater Marcus was so moved by their story that he had even wished to marry them.

The music began and everybody stood up and turned around waiting for Liz and her father coming down the aisle. It took his breath away when he saw her – she was amazing, beautiful, enchanting and everything he had ever dreamed about. Wearing a long, elegant dress that hugged her petite figure at the right places. She was smiling at him and he felt his heart jumping. When she finally arrived besides him Jeff gave his daughter away to her future husband.

“Take care of my little girl Zan.”

He whispered, Zan only nodded not able to tear his eyes away from Liz, taking her hands into his. Her eyes were shining with tears – happy tears.
Pater Marcus started the wedding ceremony – it was also something new to him and he had spent half of the night thinking about what to say. After everybody had sat down he started his speech.

“As this a special occasion I spent the night to think about what to say and I finally came to the conclusion and that I wanted this to be a special ceremony. I remember Elisabeth’ christening and her communion, she had grown into a wonderful, intelligent woman who was always ready to help if needed. And today I’m here to marry her to her true love and let me tell you Liz and Zan didn’t have to convince me that they really loved each other, one look at the couple and anyone can see that they’re meant to be together. This is something new to me because I’ve never heard of an antarian – human marriage before but I have no doubt that those two people will make it work.”

He kept on talking about the purpose of marriage and how important it was to work together. Then he asked Liz and Zan to stand up to take their vows.

“Liz I know that we had to overcome a lot of obstacles because I wasn’t easy when we first met and I also know that there will be a lot of other obstacles because our relationship isn’t only new to us but new to everybody. But I know that we will make it work because I love you from the bottom of my heart a feeling I had to learn to accept and to express, you help me and understand me – I want you to be my wife, my friend, my family - so take this ring as a sign for my everlasting love and be on my side till death to us part.”

He slipped his ring on Liz’ trembling finger, never taking his eyes off of her. Now it was Liz turn and in the beginning her voice was quivering.

“Zan even before we were told that we are each others destiny I knew it. Looking into your eyes I was realizing that it would be my home – you’re my home, no matter where we are or where we go. Although there’s a lot we have to learn about each other and our lives I know that we will make it because I cherish you more than anything on this world or the other worlds. I want us to be one part instead of two, a union. You rely on me to be your mate, to b your future queen and I’ll do everything in my power to be worth of your faith – take this ring, symbolizing my true love forever till death do us part.”

Slipping the ring on his finger Liz had the feeling she would burst because of happiness in the next moment but the only thing could be heard was Maria crying and blowing her nose. The couple though was oblivious to everything around them, they had only eyes for each other.

Michael had his arm around Maria who was having a hard time not to cry out loud – this was all way too much for her romantic heart.

“You may now kiss the bride.”

Pater Marcus then announced and that was something Zan didn’t need to hear twice. He took Liz’ face into his hands and whispered ‘I love you so much’ before touching his lips to hers.

“May I present to you his majesty crown prince Zan and his wife Elisabeth.”

Liz and Zan turned around facing their family and friends holding hands. Everybody was clapping and cheering.

*****************
Queen Sobina had been amazed by her sons fiancé – she was beautiful and watching her son how his eyes had lightened up seeing her she knew that everything would be fine. Zan would never marry her if he had any doubts about her and her ability to be the future queen. Now she as waiting to meet her finally. Honestly it was a strange feeling to attend this ceremony it was so different, so many emotions were involve and she as surprised by her sons warm words – something she had never expected from him.

Zan held Liz’ hand tight when he walked up to his parents.

“Mother – I want you to meet Liz – Liz this is my mother, queen Sobina.”

Liz wasn’t sure what to do so she bowed slightly, smiling at her mother-in-law.

“I’m very delighted to finally meet you, your highness.”

“I’m also very pleased to meet you Liz – I’m sure we will have a lot of time to get to know each other when you’re joining us on Antar. You are a wonderful bride.”

“Thank you.”

Both women were smiling and Zan felt better, his mother’s approval was important to him.

“Welcome to the royal family Liz.”

The king then smiled at his son and his new wedded wife.

“Thank you, your majesty.”

“When are you leaving again?”

Zan then asked his parents wrapping his arm around his brides waist, pulling her closer to his side.

“We’re leaving now, we can’t be away from Antar so long. Enjoy your celebration and we’ll meet you back on Antar.”

Liz and Zan walked with them to the limousine which had parked behind the church away from the reporters and all the craziness, saying their good-bye, promising that they would enjoy their time and be back on time for the convention Zan had to attend.

*****************
“Oh my god – I thought your wedding had been romantic but this…this was just so…over…overwhelming.”

Maria cried in Michaels arms, while Kyle and Vicky were standing next to them.

“Has somebody found out who has contacted the press about this?”

Kyle then asked. He had spent half the ceremony staring at the king and his wife, this was a dream come true and he really had to pick a bone with Zan.

“I guess I know who it was – “

Alex joined them with Isabelle at his side.

“…I’ve talked to on of them and they said that they received a call from a guy named Jordan ‘something’ – so it was Jordan – I mean I don’t know what he wanted to achieve with it – did he really think that this would stop them to get married?”

“Perhaps I mean…we really shouldn’t be too hard with him – after all he had had a crush on Liz for years.”

“You haven’t really told us what happened yesterday.”

Vicky then mentioned looking at the guys and waiting for an explanation.

“Zan and Jordan had a little encounter yesterday and Zan had made clear that Jordan was to stay away room him and Liz and that he was going to marry her. Of course Jordan didn’t like that and attacked Zan.”

“And what happened?”

Isabelle asked worried, because she knew her brother’s temper and the wouldn’t accept this kind of behavior.”

“Well…let’s put it that way…Zan had showed him that he was stronger…”

“Did he use his powers?”

“Y…n…yes…yeah he did.”

Michael admitted intimidated.

“You should have seen Jordan – suddenly Zan’s hand was glowing and WHAM - Jordan was flying through the air.”

Kyle suddenly explained to the girls missing Isabel’s frown and disapproval. Then suddenly Zan and Liz joined them – Maria of course was the first to congratulate them throwing her arms around Liz’ and Zan’s necks.

“You guys this was soooo romantic, so wonderful, I just can’t stop crying…I wish you all the best, I love you two.”

Everybody was smiling at Maria who was holding on to Liz. After the others had their chance to wish the couple also the best they decided to go back to there Parker’s house where they would celebrate a bit and enjoy the last hours with Zan and Liz.

*****************

Part 47

“So Vicky – have you told Kyle about the surprise already?”

Liz asked when they all had taken a seat on the porch, she was sitting on her husbands lap, enjoying the feeling of his arm around her waist and his hot breath at her neck. Yes – this was right – this was where she belonged to.

“What surprise?”

Kyle asked – after all if someone had asked him he’d say that he had had surprises enough for one day. Looking around he realized that everybody seemed to know what Liz was talking about.

“Well we thought that as you and Vicky had to cut your honeymoon short fir our wedding we would like to invite you join us tomorrow to travel with us all to Antar, attend the bonding ceremony and while the others will return to Earth you and Vicky are very welcomed to stay a bit longer with Liz and me in the palace. So what do you think?”

Again Kyle was flabbergasted – did he hear that right?

“You know Zan – this isn’t very kind of you – you’re kidding me right?”

“No.”

“NO?! That means, that…wow…we’re going to Antar?”

“Yes we are baby but I’d say we really should leave now.”

Vicky said, taking Kyle’s hands into hers, followed by Michael, Maria, Alex and Isabelle.

“So I guess we’ll see you tomorrow?”

Maria smiled at Liz, who was getting up from Zan’s lap.

“Yeah – I guess so.”

Michael smiled silently at the couple. They had talked about everything and they’d meet in Cambridge again.

*****************
Liz and Zan went into the apartment. It was a strange feeling for both of them, it wasn’t only the first time that they were alone as wife and husband but it was also the last time for a very long time for Liz coming home – home as in her apartment here on Earth. And no matter how happy she was, it was also a bit depressing and sad. Zan felt that something was bothering Liz and so he wrapped his arms around her from behind, pulling her tight to his chest, nibbling at her earlobe.

“What’s the matter baby?”

Baby? Where did that come from? He had never in his whole life used a pet name.

“Mhnm…I like that?”

She murmured nearly melting in his presence.

“I was thinking that this was the last time I’d come home to this apartment.

For some seconds nobody said anything. Zan was thinking about her honesty and what would be the best to say to her as comfort.

“Well – I’ll promise that it I’ll do everything in my power to create a new home for you on Antar if you let me – so what do you think?”

“Sounds good.”

“Good.”

He started removing the straps of her dress, kissing her neck and shoulder.

“And …(kiss)…do you…(kiss) know…(bite)…what else I’d like to do?”

Switching the side and hearing her moan he needed every bit of his self-control to not ravish her right there he was waiting for her answer. Liz’ throat had gone dry within second while her heart was beating fast and her breathing was rapid.

“W…what?…oh god…”

“Create some (kiss and bite) really nice memories (kiss) of this apartment (bite) before we leave.”

Suddenly he turned her around in his arms kissing her lips feverishly. He needed to feel her, taste her, smell her, be around and in her.

“Oh YES!”

Was all that Liz could come up with before she felt his hot lips on hers again, his tongue caressing her lips, begging for entrance. After all this was her wedding night and she would be damned if she let her melancholy destroy this important event.


After they had made love Liz was lying in front of him, her back pressed against his chest.

“Zan?”

“Mhm?”

He was drawing lazy circles with his finger around her navel.

“I know that we haven’t talked about stuff like that but I know that one of your task is also to…uhm have children…”

She wasn’t sure how to formulate her question and was relieved when she felt him readjusting his head behind her, taking a deep breath and starting to talk.

“I’ve also thought about that and honestly I don’t know if we’re able or not – I guess so – but I’ll contact a healer on Antar when we’re there and he’ll be hopefully able to tell us more.”

They were quiet again but Liz was still think about this topic.

“How…uhm do you do it? I mean I know how but the pregnancy and giving birth how do you do it on Antar?”

“Well not that I know a lot about it, honestly I don’t but I can tell you that antarian women are only four months pregnant and as much as I know giving birth isn’t that different from your way of giving birth – but why don’t we wait until we’re back and ask then?”

“Okay…do you want to have children?”

Did he have to answer that? He wasn’t sure what to say because men didn’t have to do anything with the brining up of children they just had to father them and that’s it.

“Liz…I…uhm….could…could we please postpone this talk until you know all the facts? Don’t doubt me okay? It’s just not that easy!”

He was whispering.

“Okay…”

Liz nodded although both of them knew that it wasn’t okay but what were they supposed to do? Zan was refusing to talk about it and Liz didn’t want to push him.

*****************
Everybody had already arrived at the Granolith-Center besides Zan and Liz. When the Parkers car finally arrived the royal soldiers who had been sent by the king to escort the prince and his entourage back to Antar saluted him. He held his hand out to his wife to help her out of the car.

“Ready?”

“Do I have a choice?”

She smiled at him, but the smile didn’t reach her eyes and he knew that it was really hard for her. No one could tell her when she would be able to return to Earth for some days.
Telio walked up to meet the prince.

“Your majesty the granolith is ready.”

“Liz may I introduce you to Telio, my father’s faithful servant, who also educated me.”

Telio was bowing in front of Zan’s wife, she was mesmerizing.

“It’s a pleasure to meet you your highness.”

Liz felt stupid being called ‘your highness’ – but she better got used to it.

“The pleasure is all mine Telio.”

She smiled at him when he finally looked up and he saw something he had never seen before. Not only was princess Elisabeth smiling but also prince Zan – this was some improvement and Telio was only hoping that maybe this would last.

“Give me five minutes with my parents?”

Zan nodded and let her go, he joined the other’s who were already waiting for them Rath and Vilandra were clad in their usual antarian clothes and they had also given Kyle, Vicky, Alex and Maria antarian clothes to wear. Zan was still wearing human clothes, same with Liz.

“Are you ready?”

Rath turned to his friend.

“Just a moment.”

Zan nodded and moved his hand over his torso, changing his T-shirt, the sneakers and jeans into a dark blue royal uniform, which had the royal sign in silver imprinted on the collar and his military decoration on the left side.
Maria, Alex, Kyle and Vicky gasped after watching the transformation - he was really a prince there was no doubt about it. They were now all watching Liz saying good-bye to her parents, they had decided to stay behind. Liz was crying when she finally joined the group falling into her husbands arms surprising the soldiers and Telio enormously.

“Shshshs…it’s going to be okay baby.”

He cupped her cheeks and wiped away the tears with his thumbs giving her a light kiss on her lips.

“So, you still have to change Liz.”

She nodded and moved her hand also over her torso changing from a yellow dress into a blue dress matching Zan’s uniform. Now everybody was shocked.

“How…when…did you just do what I think you just did?”

Maria was the first to find her voice again. Zan found this all very amusing, he had taught Liz everything she needed to know, now she only had to practice her skills.

“No big deal Maria.”

Liz smiled at her friend and nodded at Zan, indicating that she was ready.

“Okay, did you all get your injections?”

Zan asked the humans before entering the building followed by his friends, Telio and the soldiers.

“Telio did you introduce my friends to this kind of traveling already or shall I?”

“I’m sorry your majesty but I didn’t have the time.”

Telio felt bad knowing that he would soon get to feel Zan’s impatience – or not?
Zan was only nodding turning to the others again.

“Well, so let’s see, Liz and me are going to enter the granolith first, all you have to do is to touch it – it will pull you in on its own. Don’t be afraid, it won’t hurt maybe tickle a bit – nothing can happen to you after you all have been injected. What will happen after that is that you’ll feel the Granolith rotating while you won’t move - I’ve experienced that you lose a bit of your feeling for time and place and soon you’ll be on Antar – we’re going to wait there for you. Any more questions?”

No questions were asked and so Zan and Liz touched the Granolith at the same time.
Alex, Vilandra, Michael, Maria, Vicky and Kyle watched them being pulled into this strange thing which started glowing blue and red and soon they were gone.

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:27:38 AM
Part 48

On Antar the people were filling the streets, the news had spread fast that their prince would return today from a long journey accompanied by his human mate. They all wanted to see her and they all wanted to welcome her. The streets and houses were decorated and of course security was high.

When Zan and Liz arrived even more soldiers were waiting for them. Liz felt like getting sick, this was too much, looking into the faces of the Antarians surrounding them she didn’t see one smile…they were all serious and severe-

“Zan, Liz…welcome to Antar.”

The king approached them, Zan was having an inner fight. He knew that he couldn’t behave like on Earth, he was back home and people had expectations. No matter how hard he wanted to be carefree and happy, things were different now – there was no chance that he could behave like living on Earth. Liz was pale and she was quivering and he wanted nothing more than to take her into his arms and calm her down. Unfortunately his father had brought his advisors and some generals and other important men to this and the other planets to greet them – he had to observe the proprieties and showing emotions wasn’t a part of it.
Liz wanted to cry, the air was burning in her lungs, the light was more blue and brighter, some of the men in front of her had blue eyes, just like Zan had them when meditating.

‘Baby are you alright?’

By now she was accustomed to this welcoming, warm feeling she had gotten used to while practicing with her husband. There was no doubt, Zan was building up a connection. She could hear him in her head, thank god for those new developed powers, she knew that everything was different now but she needed Zan to hold her.

‘Zan I think I can’t do this.’

‘Sure you can – we’ll be home soon. I love you.’

Then he started introducing her to all the generals and people standing around.

In the meantime also the others had arrived and where now watching, Liz and Zan walking through the crowds the small path up to the palace. The humans were awestruck this was something amazing. The first few breath were hard and their eyes needed to adjust to the strange bluish light. First thing Maria noticed was how quiet it was, although the streets were filled with people in was quiet – no birds singing, nothing. She took in the strange buildings which were flat, no building was higher than three floors. The colors were more pastel mixed with silver, gold and bronze. And what was it about these people? They didn’t smile, hardly showing any emotions.
Kyle was speechless – this was a dream come true, he was shaking from nervousness and excitement, not realizing that he was nearly crushing Vickies hand.

*****************
Liz could feel the eyes of everybody on her – not on her and Zan but only on her. No matter where she turned she was faced with curious but emotionless eyes – what had she thought? Had she really believed that she’d be able to cope with all of that?
Finally the royal family entered the palace, the servants bowing their heads to them.
Zan turned to his parents.

“Liz and me will now retreat to our room.”

“Do that but don’t forget Zan I expect you in my chambers in two hours, we have to talk about the convention.”

His father told him before walking away from the group.

“Rath? Would you mind showing the other’s around?”

“Will do so Zan.”

Rath nodded, not saying a word. They watched Zan taking Liz by her hand walking towards a door, which opened only after Zan had moved his hand over a sign.

*****************
The door had hardly closed when Liz felt the tears burning in her eyes. She was shaking and felt like she’d brake down any second. Zan had sensed her discomfort and picked her up into his arms at once.

“Everything is going to be okay Liz, I promise…”

Kissing her on her forehead he felt her crying, clinging to him like her life was depending on it.

“Shshsh…Liz baby…I’m here, I'm here for you.”

He whispered lying her down on his bed, taking his place behind her and pulling her tighter to himself. Oh how he wished that he could make it easier for her. So he decided to let her cry, hoping that she’d feel better afterwards. Finally she fell asleep in his arms and he just enjoyed the feeling of having her in his arms. He was afraid just like her – so many things would be changing and he just hoped that their love was strong enough.

One hour later she woke up again, looking into his amber eyes.

“Hey.”

“Hey.”

“Better?”

“Better.”

She nodded.

“Good, do you want to walk around a bit? Only our wing?”

“Sounds good.”

Liz nodded and so they got up and he started showing her around. First his bedroom and offices, the library, the bathroom, the rooms for meditating and relaxing and the rooms for visitors. Then they walked up to her rooms, which looked a lot like his.

“Zan?”

“What is it?”

They stopped, standing in her bedroom, a lot of boxes with her belongings from Earth were standing around.

“Do I really have to stay here? I mean…I…I know that it’s not usual that …uhm…”

“Liz I’d love to have you around me as much as possible. I can’t imagine going to bed o waking up without you at my side…so…would you like to get your stuff into my rooms?”

“If that’s possible?”

Before answering, he took her into his arms, staring into her doe eyes, admiring her beauty.

“Sure it is…remember we’re the royal family nearly everything is possible here.”

They heard a knock at the door and before they oul answer the doors slid open and the queen appeared.

“Zan, your father is waiting for you and Liz I’d like to spend some time with you, I think we have a lot to talk about.”

“Of course your majesty.”

Liz nodded.

“Just don’t embarrass me too much mother.”

Zan chuckled before kissing his wife on her forehead and leaving the two alone.

*****************
The king was already waiting for his son and stood up immediately when the doors opened and Zan entered.

“Father.”

“Take a seat Zan…how are you doing? How is Liz?”

“Well I think that it will take a bit for her to adjust to her new environment, she’s not so good and now mother wanted to talk to her.”

They sat down at the kings table, many documents lying in front of them but in the moment the king had no intention at all to talk with his son about the convention. Zan knew the procedure and everything he needed to know. He wanted to talk to his son about Liz, he wanted to make sure that she’d feel home and safe soon.

“I was wondering Zan if you’d like to take Liz after the convention and the bonding to show her the planet?”

“Really? I thought that you needed me?”

“Well yes but that doesn’t mean that you don’t have any time left to show her the planet she’ll be queen of some day.”

“Okay, I think that would be nice, thank you. Dad there’s one question I have and before I turn to anyone else I wanted to ask you.”

“Sure, what’s it Zan?”

“We were talking about children Liz and me and I…I was wondering if it’s possible for us to have children I mean…I…”

“Oh…uhm…yes, yes we did tests back then and we figured out that you two are able to have children, don’t worry Zan I wouldn’t have picked her if you weren’t able to father an heir to the throne.”

“Okay, great so…I think I better get her to a healer…for uhm…birth control.”

“Birth control? Zan?!”

Now the king was surprised he had hoped that Liz and Zan would soon ensure the succession.

“Dad, don’t get me wrong but Liz has a lot on her mind now and I don’t want to put more pressure on her with a pregnancy…it’s hard enough.”

“I understand. You know Zan she has really changed you, you’re more thoughtful please don’t let your return to Antar change that.”

Both men were now smiling at each other.

“Why did you postpone the convention? I thought it would be today?”

“Oh well I figures that Liz wouldn’t be that happy if you left here alone right away so who cares? We’re going to fly to Dendar in two days and then you can go back to Antar and show her around.”

Zan nodded in understanding, surprised how much more human than antarian the king was – he had just never really paid any attention to it.
Then they concentrated on the documents for the convention, trying to get everything finished before dinner.

*****************
The queen was eyeing her new daughter-in-law carefully before talking to her again.

“So how do you like it so far Liz? I hope it’s okay that I call you Liz instead of Elisabeth?”

“Yes that’s fine with me. Zan has shown me around in our wing and it’s magnificent, there still so much that I have to learn about Antar.”

“Oh but I’m sure that this won’t be a problem, you’re an intelligent woman Liz, c’mon join me to the gardens…it’s nicer to talk there than here.”

Liz followed the queen through the palace into a garden – a garden like nothing she had ever seen before. The colors were more brighter than on Earth, the trees weren’t that high but wider – nevertheless it was wonderful.

“So Liz…I want to tell you what will expected from you…but don’t feel pressured okay and when ever you have a question don’t hesitate to interrupted me.”

“I will Madam.”

“Fine, so let’s see, you’ll assigned your own servants who you’re allowed to call whenever you need them, Zan has mentioned something that you want to work with our healer in the laboratory, that’s unusual but as there will be a lot of changes I just hope that you won’t be faced with too many problem. Zan’s task is to slowly take over his father’s responsibilities, while your task will be to represent the royal family. I’m also sure that you two have already talked about children?”

“Yes but we’re not sure if it’s possible.”

Liz admitted. She was taking in her surroundings, surprised that she had gotten used to the air so fast.

“Oh it’s possible so you’re expected to get pregnant. Usually women are not allowed to take any kind of birth control after the bonding.”

Seeing the shocked expression on Liz’ face she took her hand into hers smiling a bit at her.

“Oh don’t worry Liz. I’m sure that Zan will take great care of you. Honestly I’m impressed how much he has changed, it’s not usual to show so much gentleness in public but with you.”

“I don’t know what to say now your majesty.”

“Just promise me that you’ll stay at his side no matter what will happen, will you?”

“I will.”

“Good.”

They kept on talking and talking until a servant appeared in front of them, telling them that dinner was ready and that the king, the prince and their guests were waiting for them.

*****************

Part 49

The next day Liz woke up with a start, she felt like she had dreamed everything that had happened in the last days but opening her eyes she had to realize that it was reality. Zan felt Liz sitting up and sat up also.

“What? What is it? Are you okay baby?”

“Yes, yes I was just…oh my god it’s real.”

“What?”

“That we’re married and on Antar.”

She lay back again, snuggling into his war arms, feeling his naked chest against hers. It had taken him a bit the night before to calm her down but his gentleness and love had eventually managed to not only distract and exhaust her but to also show her that there was no need to have any doubts.

“You regret it?”

“Never.”

“Good.”

Silence.

“Liz?”

“Mhmm?”

“I’ve talked to my father about taking you to a healer.”

“Why that?”

“Birth control?”

“Oh…uhm…good…so what did he say?”

“You can go when ever you want.”

“Will you join me?”

Silence.

“You sure?”

“Yes – please, don’t let me go there alone.”

“Fine.”

Again silence.

“Zan?”

“Mhmm?”

“I love you.”

“Love you too.”

*****************
Maria was pacing the floor while Rath got ready for the ceremony, she was already wearing the dress he had created for her.

“Maria if you don’t stop walking at once I swear I’ll glue you to the ground.”

“I’m sorry it’s just I’m a bit nervous.”

“Why? I mean they’re already married, the bonding is just the last step they have to take.”

“I know I just can’t believe that we’ll go back to Earth later and leave her here alone.”

“She’ll be fine ‘Ria, Zan will take care of her.”

He wrapped his arms from behind around her waist and kissed her neck.
Unfortunately they had to leave as the bonding ceremony would be held soon.

*****************
The room the ceremony would be held was round, in the middle was a blue circle. everybody was gathered together, waiting for Zan and Liz.
Suddenly the door slid open and both entered the room, clad in white robes.
A man looking like some kind of priest bowed in front of them before ordering them to step into the blue circle.
The humans were watching the whole procedure with curiosity. After Zan and Liz had entered the circle, the took each others hands, closing their eyes. The priest started chanting in another language, the air cooled down, while the air in the circle seemed to heat up. Now the priest also stepped into the circle putting his hands on their heads. Somehow they both knew to open up their eyes – Zan’s as well as Liz’ eyes were now shining blue and bright and when the priest took his hands away and stepped out of the circle, also Liz had the royal sign on her forehead now.

The bonding was consummated and Liz finally a member of the royal family. Everybody was clapping and Zan and Liz smiling. Through their new established connection they talked with each other.

“I love you princess Elisabeth of Antar.”

“And I love you prince Zan of Antar always and forever.”

“…and even longer.”

They shared a gentle kiss after everybody had left the room.

Saying good-bye to Maria and Alex was the hardest thing for Liz.

“And you remember to contact me when ever you need me chica promise…”

Maria cried hugging Liz tightly.

“I will, I promise. And Rath you take care of her okay?”

“Promise.”

While Liz was saying good-bye to Maria and Rath, Zan instructed Alex to take care of his sister and to make sure that she’d be fine. A short time later they were gone and Liz clinging to her husband.

*****************
The next day Zan left with his father to Dendar early in the morning while Telio took Liz, Kyle and Vicky for a tour around the palace and the city. He really liked the princess she was a kind and intelligent woman and he had no doubt that the Antarians would also like her. While in the city she didn’t hesitate to ask as many questions as possible and won the hearts of those over who talked to her – yes this was good. He was also surprised by the knowledge this human Kyle had about their planet – he had really underestimated this species. They were far more intelligent than he had expected – although he couldn’t quite understand these emotions the humans were showing yet – he was sure that with his future queen he could really get used to this kind of living.

Zan and his father returned from the convention around lunch time and after that Zan took Liz to a healer.

“So how can I help you your majesty?”

The healer of the royal family asked after the two had taken a seat in front of him. Liz was nervous again, it was so different from a human doctor here – no real instruments for an examination. Actually you could only find a desk some chairs and a strange looking bed.

“Well I know that this isn’t usual as we just got bonded but the princess and I are not planning on having any children in the moment, so we wanted to ask you about birth control.”

Zan started explaining to the healer. He felt a little stupid talking about his sex life and everything concerning the topic so openly. After all it wasn’t usual that the man joined the woman for such an appointment at the healer. Yet he knew what Liz had given up for him and this was only one way to show his support. The healer had astonishment written all over his face before he even considered talking again.

“Aahh…okay, so why don’t I take a look at you and then we can discuss what I’d suggest for you.”

The healer turned to Liz, nodding at her confidently.

“Would you please follow me your majesty and lay down here?”

“Sure, do I have to…uhm…like remove…”

Liz was looking down at her clothes hesitantly – not knowing what to do.

“Oh? Oh no…no it’s just fine…just lay down here.”

“Okay.”

Liz was looking at Zan desperate for his touch, so he got up and took her hand again. Talking to her in her mind that everything would be fine and that she shouldn’t be afraid because she wouldn’t feel anything – only tickling.

“So tell me princess Elisabeth – what kind of birth control do you have on Earth?”

The healer asked getting ready for the examination, changing his breathing to a slower frequency.

“Various, on Earth I was on the pill…”

“Ahh I think I’ve heard about them not very effective if you ask me…so let’s see.”

He closed his eyes and moved his hands over her lower abdomen, examining her body and by what he found he was very surprised. After finishing the examination he sat down at his desk again and waited for the royal couple to take their seat again as well.

“So what do you recommend for us?”

“Well your majesty – I think you’re too late for birth control – your pregnant princess Elisabeth – congratulations.”

*****************

posted on 10-Sep-2001 6:30:17 AM
Epilogue


“Daaaaaad? Moooom?”

A certain four year old prince was running through the doors of his parents living room not able to wait any longer.

“Prince Maxwell – Max come back at once.”

Maria was right behind him, holding him back when she finally caught him by his arm.

“I want Mommy, I want Daddy…”

The small boy was whining in Maria’s arms.

“I know sweety and I’m sure you’ll soon be allowed to see them.”

“When’s the baby finally there?”

In that moment the door to his parents bedroom opened and a smiling king Zan walked up to them.

“Hey little one.”

“Daddy, where’s mommy? Where’s the baby?”

The small boy wanted to be taken by his father and so Zan took him from Maria.

“How is she?”

Maria asked concerned – remembering Maxwell’s birth and how much it had exhausted Liz back then. After all she also already knew that there wasn’t any difference between a pure human birth and an antarian-human birth – they were both painful – although she could only talk about the antarian-human part of it.

“Oh she’s fine Maria and guess what Max you’re a big brother now, you have a sister.”

Zan proudly smiled at his son whose eyes were shining with excitement.

“Really?”

“Yes and I’m going to show her to you but you have to promise to be quiet because Mum and your sister are really tired now.”

“I promise.”

“That’s my boy.”

Smiling at Maria before turning around Zan took his son with him into the bedroom where Liz had just delivered the baby.

“Hey sweety…”

Liz smiled at her son, holding her baby girl tight to her chest. Zan sat down on the bed next to his precious wife. He held Max on his lap so that the little boy could take a good look at his sister.

“She’s so small.”

Max stated, wrinkling his nose at his baby sister.

“Well you’ve been as tiny as her when you were born Max.”

“What’s her name?”

“Leoni – how do you like that?”

“I like it.”

The boy nodded, making his parents smile.
Leoni started yawning.

“Uh I think that there’s someone really tired huh?”

Zan smirked at his daughter, putting Max down on the floor again and taking Leoni from his wife to put her into the crib. Then he sat back down again while Max had taken his place besides his mother, slowly drifting into the long needed sleep.

“He’s tired also.”

Liz smiled at her son, stroking him over his dark hair he had inherited from his father.

“Well he refused to go to bed until Leoni is here so what do you expect. How are you feeling baby? Any pain?”

“No – only tired, have you talked to Vilandra and Maria?”

“Yeah, Vil told me that they would come up at the weekend as Alex I teaching and she also has a lot of stuff to do with her upcoming signing for her new book. Maria is waiting outside while Rath is taking care of Tammy – but I'm sure they will all visit you tomorrow.”

“What about Kyle?”

“He’s still on Dendar as much as I know. I have no idea if Maria already reached them.”

“Oh well – after all as your ambassador he has a lot to do so it’s okay.”

Zan wrapped an arm around Liz’ shoulder kissing her on top of her head.

“Have I told you how much I love you today?”

“I think so…I think you’ve mentioned it a few times already but I can’t stop hearing it so don’t stop. Thank you by the way.”

“For what?”

“For being there for me the whole day and night, for taking away the pain for being a better husband than I could ever hope for and for loving me.”

Zan felt his heart contracting, it was those moments and millions more that he knew he had made the right decision in marrying her and introducing so many changes to his people and the other planets. His people were happy, he was happy – so that left nothing to desire!
Stroking Liz’ arm gently with his one hand, holding his new born daughter’s tiny hand with the other and knowing his son was safe in Liz’ arms he also closed his eyes and fell asleep.

The End
*****************


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