FanFic - Crashdown After Hours
"All I Want Is You"
Part 9
by Anne M
Disclaimer: I don't own Roswell or any of the characters. I have no affiliation with the WB television network or the author, Melinda Metz.
Category: After Hours
Rating: NC-17
Authors Note: Isaac and Olivia Evans and Michelle Guerin and Joel Reese are mine. Lyrics: The Waiting . . . Unfazed. DEDICATION: To Mandy -- in your case, I will concede that sometimes reality is better than imagination. That's rare . . . just like you. LSS -- You put up with me in person and not sleeping for days on end. You deserve a medal and combat pay. What you get is a fic. My sincerest apologies. Gale -- Damn, we missed you . . . Nev -- Missed you, too. XXOO
Joel closed his eyes for a moment and quickly wished he hadn't. Olivia's body flashed across his mind's eye, unconscious and covered in blood. His breath hitched so hard that it hurt, and just as quickly his desperate eyes opened seeking out the reality of her sleeping, healing form. He wished he could erase that other image from his mind forever. The screaming terror of those scant few minutes had lasted a lifetime. As he concentrated on regulating his breathing, he felt her hand squeeze his. Warm. Stronger than he would've thought possible at this point in her recovery. That small sign from her undermined all the progress he had made toward any semblance of bringing his breathing under control. His lungs ached from the struggle as he watched her regain consciousness. Oh God. He couldn't cry. He had to be strong for her. But, right now . . .

Olivia's eyes fluttered open slowly and Joel's filled with tears that spilled over and ran in a stream down his face. He couldn't remember the last time he had cried. The sensation was strange and disconcerting. The tears felt almost hot . . .

Olivia smiled at first and then frowned in concern as Joel's face became clearer . . .

The fuzzy edges became sharper as her equilibrium returned.


He was here, just like Michelle had promised. But, he was so . . . sad . . . She lie still and waited while her mind fought it's way back . . .

Joel: (strangled) "Liv? . . . "

Olivia: (weakly) "I'm o.k., Joel." "Just a little tired."

A few moments passed in silence as Joel struggled and won the war with his emotions. Olivia tried as hard as she could to hang on to awareness as it circled around in her head every so often. But, then it was gone again just as fast as it had appeared.

Joel: "Are you sure you're all right?" (fear lacing every word)

Olivia: (finding balance easier to achieve with every passing moment) "Yes, I'm sure."

Joel: "God, Liv. You scared me to death . . . "

Olivia: (taking in the strain on his face) "What happened?"

Joel (closing his eyes and trying to hold the memories at bay while reciting the facts): "You were attacked, and Isaac helped you until we could get here. Your Dad . . . (swallowing around the persistent lump in his throat) your Dad healed you, Liv. (wonder creeping into his voice)

Olivia: "I'm sorry, Joel. I'm sorry you had to find out this way. I wanted a chance to tell you on my own . . ." (uncertainty filling her face with fear)

Joel: "I don't care, Olivia. I couldn't care less. I can't help it. I have to be with you. . . . (desperate for words that wouldn't come) . . . I have to . . . "

Olivia (smiling): "I think I understand. It's like . . . there's no choice . . . and, I wouldn't want one if there were."

Joel (smiling for the first time since she'd been injured): "That's it exactly." (deeply relieved that she understood how he felt . . .)

Olivia stared at Joel's face for a moment and noted the tear stains and wondered at them and what they had cost him. She couldn't have loved him more in that moment than she already did, but it wasn't time to tell him that yet.

Olivia: (eyes open wide and intent) "Joel, would you please go get my Dad? I need to tell him that I'm all right."

Joel stared down into her beautiful face and for a moment had to fight the fear of leaving her, even for the small space of time that it would take to get her Dad in here.

Joel: "Yeah. I'll get him. . . . I'll be right back." (assuring himself as much as her)

Olivia: "I know. . . . Thank you, Joel. . . . for helping me and for sticking around . . ."

Joel: (humbled and beyond caution) "What else could I do? . . . (taking a deep breath) "I love you, Olivia."

Olivia: (hardly believing her ears, and staring silently at him for a moment and then blinking) . . . "I love you, too, Joel."

He held her face in his hands for a moment and brought his forehead down on top of hers, closing his eyes. He could scarcely believe he had told her how he felt. And, for her to feel the same way was just . . . more than a person could accept. But, accept it he would, and be grateful. Releasing her face, he stood slowly and with one last look into her eyes, he made his way to the room where her parents were still talking with the others.


As Joel approached the table, Isaac and Michelle became aware of his presence first. They immediately gave him their full attention. As the adults noticed the looks of preoccupation on their faces, they too fell silent and looked for the cause. Max turned around in his chair to face Joel, who looked at him and no one else. Before Joel even spoke, Max understood what the younger man was going to say.

Joel: "She's awake and she wants to see you."

Max stood abruptly from his chair and turned back towards the group briefly in hesitation, but, finally, without saying a word, he practically ran from the room towards his baby girl.

Liz felt tears fall down her cheeks yet again. No matter what happened to her family, they had loved each other very well. Who could ask for more than that?

Joel followed Max back into the living room, respecting, in spite of himself, the relationship that he had with Olivia.

Max knelt down beside the couch and picked up Olivia's hand, wrapping it in his larger, stronger one. As soon as she felt his presence beside her, her eyes flew open and she tried to reach up to hug him, but was still too weak. Torn between the gratitude that she was awake and the fear of her weakness, Max scooped her up with ease and held her close to him. He heard her whisper, "Thank you, Daddy," and he felt his heart break in ways he never expected to experience. When he could finally speak, he whispered back to her, "I'm so sorry, baby." Max gently laid her back down on the couch and pushed her hair back and tucked it behind her ears, the same way he had for as long as she could remember.

Olivia: (confused) "Why are you sorry? You saved my life."

Max, feeling the weight of too much responsibility settling squarely on his shoulders, faced his daughter unflinching.

Max: "No, Isaac and Michelle and Joel saved you, Liv. They got you home in time . . . (voice trailing off in remembered fear) "

Olivia: (eyes filling with tears) "But, you saved me. I love you so much."

Max: (profoundly grateful to have another day to hear those words from her) "I love you, too. . . . "Are you all right?"

Olivia: (frowning in concentration) "I think so. I just feel tired and a little disoriented."

Max: "I think by tomorrow you'll be much better."

Olivia smiled at Max and then her eyes drifted over his shoulder to Joel, who was still watching her intently for any sign of trouble. Joel's eyes held hers in a way that Max easily recognized. Sighing inwardly, he got to his feet and turned to face what he was now certain would be a permanent intrusion into his previously peaceful existence. Joel forced himself to look away from Olivia, but not without some difficulty. He looked at Max in question and waited to hear what was on his mind.

Max: "It's getting late, Joel. Won't your parents be concerned about you?"

Joel: (determinedly) "No. I told them I was spending the night with Isaac, so they wouldn't wait up worrying about me. I didn't know how long I'd be."

Joel waited, almost certain that the request for him to leave was imminent. Seconds ticked by sounding and feeling like minutes . . .

Max thought about the consideration he'd shown for his parents and weighed that against the lie he'd told to said parents. He may have to become quite gifted in the art of prevarication if he were to remain a part of Olivia's life. And, no matter how much he'd like to turn back time and prevent the inevitable from happening, it was too late.

Max: "Well, if that's what you told them, then I guess you better make yourself comfortable in Isaac's room. . . . How do you like your eggs?"

Joel (relieved but determined not to show it, nonchalantly): "Scrambled . . . with Tabasco sauce."

Max's eyes narrowed instantly and he felt fear and suspicion course through his veins in a flood.

Max: (tightly) "How do you know anything about that?"

Joel: (confused) "About what?"

Max: (gone completely still) "The Tabasco sauce."

Joel: (still lost) "What's to know? I love the stuff. My parents use it all the time."

Max: (forcing himself to calm down) "Unusual preference."

Joel: (shrugging) "Yeah . . . I guess so. Not too many people like it."

Max continued to sort through the possibilities for a moment longer before he quietly excused himself and went back to the other room.

Joel watched him leave and then knelt down beside Olivia again.

Joel: "What was that about?"

Olivia: (smiling) "Well, we, uh, my family that is, . . . we really like Tabasco sauce . . . a lot."

Joel: (surprised) "Really?"

Olivia: (feeling preoccupied by the pleasure of having Joel with her) "Yeah . . . "

Joel: (becoming distracted by the look on her face) "That's a little . . . coincidental, isn't it?"

Olivia: (completely disinterested in the topic) "I suppose so . . . "

Joel: (leaning closer) "We'll have to talk about this later . . ."

Olivia: (eyes drifting to his mouth) "Yeah . . . later . . ."

As his lips met hers in a sweet, gentle kiss, Olivia felt the certainty in her heart that she had met her soul mate. Finally . . .


Later that night, Max walked down the hall to his bedroom. On the way, he passed Isaac's room. Opening the door, he saw Isaac in his bed and Joel comfortably asleep on the floor. A miracle in itself. They'd almost had to restrain him when they moved Olivia to her room. Max would've liked to have been aggravated with him, but he couldn't muster the emotion at all. It was too easy to recall his own feelings when it came to Liz . . . then, and even now . . .

Next, he came to Olivia's door. Opening it quietly, he saw her asleep in her bed and resting. Not struggling for survival but truly sleeping . . . and healing. Michelle shared the big bed with her. Michelle. As much a daughter to him as his own. And now, in more ways than one. Isaac was in love with her . . .

If the boys were in the girls' room in the morning, he could handle that. As long as they weren't sharing the bed. He could handle anything except *that*. In fact, he'd be disappointed if the boy's didn't find their way to the floor in the girls' room . . .

It was well after 3 a.m. and exhaustion was setting in. Maria and Michael and Isabel and Alex were all sleeping over in every available space the small house had to offer. No one felt safe on their own tonight. Rubbing the back of his neck, Max finally slipped inside his own bedroom. Liz was asleep in their bed. He stood for a moment staring at her. Sometimes, the sight of her could stop him breathing . . .

Tonight was one of those times. Her hair fell across her pillow and the moonlight illuminated her features in such a way as to make her appear ethereal. He quickly pulled off his clothes and slipped into bed beside her. Lying on his side, he tucked her long hair behind her ear, and wondered at her ability to sleep tonight. Liz was remarkably good at the bottom line. Her family was safe tonight and that's all that she cared about. Tomorrow she'd get up and be ready to face anything all over again. He didn't want to disturb her, but he couldn't help himself from pulling her up close and holding her against him. He always wanted her. Twenty-four hours a day, he wanted her, but right now, holding her was more than enough. He just needed to feel all the things that made up her presence in his life. He needed her . . .

Waking only about halfway, Liz twined her arms around Max and snuggled against him, until his emotions filtered through to hers. The waves of pain and fear quickly calmed, but not before Liz was fully awake.

Max: "I'm sorry. I didn't want to wake you up. I just . . . "

Liz: (smiling) "Is everybody settled?"

Max: "Yeah. Alex and Isabel are in the spare bedroom, and Michael and Maria are on the sofa. Joel was on the floor in Isaac's room, and Michelle is with Liv."

Liz: "Let's hope it stays that way."

Max: (rueful) "I was having a similar thought a little while ago."

Liz: "Amazing, isn't it?"

Max: (seeing nothing amazing in any of it): "What?"

Liz: (concentrating) "That they all found each other at the same time. Almost as if, it was just in time . . . "

Max: (surprised) "You are amazing. I hadn't even thought about the timing."

Liz: "It just seemed strange that both of them would find their mates at the same time."

Max: "And, if they hadn't all been together, Olivia would've died tonight."

Liz: (focusing sharply on her husband's face) "Don't do that, Max."

Max: "What?"

Liz: "Don't blame yourself for this." "We are who we are. I wouldn't change a single thing about my life no matter what happens."

Max hugged her close and without even meaning to, let go of all the emotional strain into the connection that ran between them constantly. Liz didn't even blink. When they shared things together, it was always so much easier . . .

She put her hands on his face and kissed him sweetly, knowing that his kisses would be anything but. He was much too far gone this evening for restraint . . .

The next few moments defined passion.

And, fire.



Explosive . . .


Later that night, Michelle struggled with the covers that had wound their way around her body during her subconscious misadventures. Her body writhed in the moonlight, and the soft sounds she made were only met by deaf ears. Olivia was so deeply into a healing sleep that nothing short of cannon fire would awaken her. Isaac's bedroom was separated from Olivia's by a long bathroom. Michelle, somewhere between sleep and awareness, fought the panic that nightmares always bring and concentrated on surfacing from the dream state, knowing that no one could hear her silent cries for help.


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