|"A Few Degrees Shy of Heaven"
Disclaimer: I own absolutely nothing.
Summary: ***If you haven't read Road Trip, much of this will not make sense***
Category: After Hours
|Maria wasn't exactly sure what reaction she expected from the members around the room: revulsion, fear,
maybe even hate, but whatever she expected she got the opposite.
The elders all burst up laughing. "That's impossible dear, you're two sweet!" Dinah said, squeezing her hand.
"Yes," Sintama agreed, "A Tyrvanas child would have natural aggression issues and would not be able to hide them inside. You are too darling of a child for that."
"Besides," Lana added. "When I looked into your souls last week, I would have seen it."
"It really does sound unlikely," Ashtar said.
Maria looked him in the eye. "It's true, I tell you. I've seen it and I've felt it deep inside. The ritual woke something up inside of me and I have had aggressive tendencies to some degree."
"This is a joke," Dinah said but her face now looked unsure. She looked to Michael and he nodded at her gravely.
"Nacerro came to her last night and told her. Also yesterday, we found another with powers like hers, a guy we go to school with and Liz's ex-boyfriend. Nacerro told Maria that they were brother and sister and then told her about the prophecy and how it came to be that he was her father and Kyle's mother. It all sounds a little out there but it makes sense. I...I believe her."
"How do you know if it makes sense, Michael?" Isabel asked. "How much do you really know about her life?"
Michael looked at Isabel...his real sister-he was going to have to get used to that...and said, "When we connected during the ritual, we saw every little detail of each other's lives since we were children. I know ever thought and feeling she has ever had and I've seen the events of her life since she was born. I know what I saw and I know that Nacerro's story is true. What she feels, I feel, and I feel that it is true. He is her father and Kyle is her half brother and her purpose would never be to hurt anyone of us." He said the last part to the rest of the members of the room as well.
Maria looked around the faces of the room, wondering what their reaction would be to this. Disora and Lyson were frowning but the rest looked a little shocked. Ashtar was the first to speak.
"What are your intentions, Maria?"
She didn't hesitate. "I want to put that bastard in the ground and that's why were here. We need help. I need help. I need to know how I do it. Will you please help me?"
"Excuse us, we need to speak privately," Ashtar said to the teenagers and he and the elders left the room. Maria didn't know what to think of that. Would they refuse to help her? God, she hoped not.
She turned to look at Michael and saw that Dinah was staring at her with an unreadable expression. "I would never hurt Michael," she said, trying to reassure the woman. "I love him with all my heart and soul. Nothing could make me hurt him."
Dinah nodded. "Of that I have no doubt. I can feel the love between you. I do however have my reservations only because if you are who you say you are, your blood will take over and it will not be about how you feel. It will be about what you are destined for."
Maria grabbed Dinah's hand and squeezed it, not giving her a chance to pull away. "Dinah, the prophecy says my will has to be strong and it isn't! Well, it's strong but rather on the opposite poll. I want him gone for the pain he has caused me and my mother all these years and the pain he intends to cause to my friends. I want him and all the others dead. Except for Kyle. I want him on our side. And...I saw some things last night from inside him and I think my baby is the key."
The woman searched Maria's face for a moment and in that span of time, Maria held her breath. She wanted this woman to not only like her but to believe her. If she couldn't gain her trust, how would she ever gain the trust of the elders? Finally Dinah stopped searching and she slowly nodded. "I...I believe you."
Maria sighed a breath of relief and she squeezed the woman's hand one more time. "Thank you," she whispered. And then in a louder voice she said, "Now that's over, how about you go meet your other children." She smiled at the woman and said, "I think they're getting a little anxious."
Dinah nodded at Maria's first comment and then her face fell open is shock when she realized that she had totally forgotten about Isabel and Max in all the confusion. She turned towards them and her eyes filled with tears. She held out her arms in welcome and said, "Oh, my children. Come here."
Both Isabel and Max looked a little shy but they walked up to the woman and she embraced them both. Then she pulled Michael into the embrace so that she held all three of them. "My beautiful babies," she sobbed.
Maria looked over to where Liz and Alex were sitting and they exchanged smiles, respecting the moment between Michael, Max, Isabel and their mother. They didn't feel left out or anything; instead they were overjoyed that their loves found a link to their heritage.
Dinah finally pulled back and looked all three of them in the faces. "Oh Isabel, you are gorgeous. You look alot like my mother before she died but that's a story for another time. And Max, you look so much like your father, I can't believe I didn't see the resemblance when I entered the room. I had only heard of Michael being alive and I was desperate to see it for myself. He was my first child. You two didn't come until later."
"How much older than us is he?" Max asked.
"Well, you all appear to be the same age but he is seven human years older than the both of you. And you two are twins. We were on the ship to earth for over forty earth years and we knew that if we wanted you to survive, we should put you all in the incubation pods. That's why there is no differences in your current appearances."
Isabel bit her lip and it was obvious that she was debating whether or not to ask a question. "What is it, Isabel? Don't be afraid to ask me anything."
"Well, I was wondering about our father? Is he....?" she trailed off.
Dinah looked down in her lap, her expression a little sad. "He was murdered back on Pearlan. Killed by a Tyrvanas warrior. All the royalty was murdered except for me. I got away."
"Royalty?" Michael asked, raising an eyebrow. He was sad to learn he had no living father but he was more overjoyed than he ever thought possible that he had a mother out there somewhere all his life and she was now sitting before him.
Dinah nodded and smiled. "Yes, you are all royalty amongst our people. Your father was ruler of the Dilana people. That's why you're so important.. Under your leadership, we shall regain our planet." She stopped for a moment, apparently thinking to herself and then she said, "I like your earth names but your birth names were ones chosen from our prophecies. We knew who you were by the time I was pregnant with Max and Isabel. The names roughly translate to savior, power, and leader."
"What are they? Their Dilana birth names, I mean." Maria asked.
"Well, Max is the leader. He is the one who is destined to organize the rebellion. His name is Arion. Isabel is the power. She is the one whose power will be the greatest. Her name is Izmine. And Michael is our savior. He is the one wild power who will shall regain the planet. His name is Kieran."
Alex whistled and everyone looked over at him questioningly. "Wow, looks like some things never change. You three must have been playing those roles by instinct or something."
Liz nodded, understanding what getting at. "I know. Like, Max has always been the leader and always takes responsibility for everyone else even though it isn't necessary, Isabel has the greatest power and she can do many things the other can't, and Michael, well, I don't know about the savior part but he is definitely a wild power."
"That's for sure," several voices agreed, including Maria's, and Michael glared.
Michael glared but his lips were turned up in a smirk. "Ha, ha. Very funny."
Everyone got a short laugh out of this but they quieted when the elders reappeared. Maria looked first at her friends - her family - and then she inhaled deeply and faced the elders. Ashtar spoke for the group. "We'll help you Maria. We're going to have a community meeting in an hour so that the entire community knows that we have found the three children who shall retake over our planet and we will let them know that we have one of the two on our side. Between us all, we shall come up with a plan to defeat Nacerro."
"Here put these on," Dinah instructed the three girls. "At community meetings, we all dress up in our bests and Isabel, as ruler, you can't go in wearing jeans."
The girls unfolded pile that Dinah gave them and began to put them on. Maria's and Liz's dresses consisted of a chemise like the one that Maria wore at the ceremony except these weren't transparent. Over the bust they had bodices. Liz's was made of a pale blue material lined with silver and Maria's was made up of a rich green lined with gold. They wore matching skirts over the bottom of the chemises and small crowns on their heads. The outfits were something you would have seen straight out of the Renaissance Era but these were much more grand.
Isabel's dress was just as grand if not grander. The bodice and skirt were a deep royal blue and her chemise was silvery. Her head was adorned with a crown of small Asarra crystals which looked amazing over her golden locks.
"So, does everyone dress like this at the meetings?" Maria asked as she tied up the front of her bodice. "I mean, they're a little grand for a meeting I would think."
Dinah shook her head. "No, not at all. But my children are royalty and that's the way they must dress for their introduction into our community."
Maria arched an eyebrow, a little confused. "Why do we have to dress like this, then? I mean we're not royalty."
"I beg to differ," Lana said as she entered the room. "As Michael's wife, you are our...I guess the best word would be Queen. Michael is the first born of our leader back on Pearlan and it is his rightful place."
Maria interrupted the woman before she could go on. "But if Max is the leader why isn't he king?"
"He is leader as in organizer but Michael is our people's leader, and as to what I was going to say, Liz, as Max's soulmate is required to be at his side as is Alex and Isabel."
Both Isabel and Liz looked up sharply. "Soulmates?" Isabel asked, her face reflecting shock.
Liz shook her head. "But, I'm not even with Max."
Dinah reached out for Liz's hand. "But you should be. You belong together and Isabel belongs with Alex."
Lana nodded in agreement. "I saw it the moment that I walked into the room this afternoon. Do you think it's a coincidence that you three met Michael, Max and Isabel? Well, my dear, it just isn't so. It was Rusu's plan that you would find each other. You six belong together and whether or not you are together at the present time, there is no arguing what has been destined."
"Royalty? Bodices? Jeez, I feel like I've stepped back in time," Isabel muttered.
"Tell me about it," Maria agreed.
They heard a knock at the door and Sintama popped her head in. "It's time."
Dinah clapped her hands in delight. "Okay children, let's go meet your people."
"How come I don't see any children or teenagers?" Maria whispered to Sintama as they walked to the front of the room. She was a little uncomfortable as she walked in to the large hall because the hoards of people sitting in the room were watching them curiously. She figured they hadn't been told yet.
Sintama smiled. "Our reproduction cycle doesn't come on for another three years. We can only reproduce every fifty human years. But, believe me, in three years, this place will have so many children we won't know what to do with them."
Maria was confused. "Then, how did I get pregnant?"
"You have human and Tyrvanas blood in you and your cycles aren't like ours. Go ahead and take you seat next to Michael, now."
Maria hadn't noticed Michael until then but when she did, she had to laugh a little. He was wearing the same green colors as she was but he looked stiff and uncomfortable in his clothes and there was a small scowl on his face. Maria sat down next to him and said, "Hey spaceboy, looking good."
"Bite me Deluca," he grumbled, but that only made her laugh harder.
"Later," she promised and looked over to see a wicked grin on his lips. Then she looked forward and got a little comfortable at how everyone was still staring at them. She felt like she was on display.
"Okay, everyone quiet down." Ashtar said as he made calming gestures with his hands. "I guess you're wondering why we have called this emergency meeting with you all tonight and why we are joined by six new members? Believe me, it was for good reason." He cleared his throat and looked behind him at the teenager and then he addressed the community again in a proud, boisterous voice. "We have always thought them dead but one week ago, we discovered it just isn't so. These children before you are our hope for the future. Stand up children." A little unsure, they all stood. "I would like to introduce Arion, Izmine, and Kieran and their soulmates."
A collective gasp could be heard around the room.
One of the men in the front stood and sputtered, "You mean...they..."
Ashtar nodded. He walked over and grabbed Isabel and Alex by the hand. "I present to you Izmine. The one with the power. Her earth name is Isabel and her soulmate is Alex."
He moved back and retrieved Max and Liz. "And here I present Arion. The prophesized leader. His earth name is Max and his soulmate is Elizabeth."
"And finally, I present Kieran and his wife, Maria. Kieran, our savior, is earth named Michael. And he and Maria are with child."
Maria looked forward and saw confusion reflecting on everyone's faces. "How is that so?" a voice called out. "The birthing cycle isn't here yet."
"You can sit," Ashtar said to the teenagers and then he addressed the group. "Well, that's partly the reason why we are here. I need everyone to remain absolutely attentive while I speak and I don't want any interruptions. What I say might be shocking but believe me, there is nothing to worry about. Here me out. First off, Liz, Alex, and Maria are human. Well, at least Liz and Alex are completely human but Maria is only half."
"Human soulmates? That's preposterous!" Someone cried and Ashtar silenced them with a look.
Lana spoke. "No it's true. No interruptions!"
Ashtar thanked her with a glance and then proceeded. "If you remember correctly, the Tyrvanas' prophecy said that there would be two that shall arise to stop the three - if their will is strong." Heads could be seen nodding amongst the crowd. "I don't want to alarm you and I need you to understand that her will is strong on our side, her intentions are pure, but Maria is one of them. She is half Tyrvanas by blood but her heart belongs to Kieran. She wants to stop her father and bring us back into leadership of Pearlan."
Silence could be heard throughout the hall for a moment and then it interrupted into chaos. Several voices could be heard amongst the clamoring of the crowd.
"That's a likely story!"
"She's here to kill us all!"
"You're a fool to trust in a Tyrvanas!"
"I say we kill her while we have the chance!"
That last comment struck Maria to the core and she began to cry. It was useless, they would never believe her. They would never help her.
"SILENCE!" Ashtar yelled. "EVERYONE SHUT UP NOW!!!!
The hall quieted but Maria couldn't help but notice the menacing, untrusting glares that were turned on her. *I have to make them believe me!* she thought and Michael grabbed her hand.
*Go make them believe you then.*
Maria nodded and then stood up and walked to where Ashtar stood. In a loud voice, she said, "EVERYONE PLEASE LISTEN! I HAVE SOMETHING TO SAY ON MY BEHALF!"
The crowd grew completely quiet and Maria spoke.
|Part 19 | Index | Part 21
|Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours