FanFic - Crashdown After Hours
"The Experiment"
Part 24
by LivE
Disclaimer: Nothing Roswell is mine, sadly!!!
Summary: This takes place two weeks after Destiny. Someone from the alien’s race contacts them and takes them to a camp where they were to receive training before returning to their planet. Or maybe for something else! Read and find out…
Category: After Hours
Rating: NC-17
Journal Entry 33

I dread the fact that I have to be the one to give them the news. Aaron and Kayla, this was not what you initially planned, but we needed to adapt. And it turned out so much better than we could have hoped for.

For the first time since they’ve known him, Nick seemed uncomfortable and at a loss for words and Max felt like a big hand was choking the life from him slowly. What was so awful that Nick would be so distressed about telling them? He felt Liz lean against his side and snake her arm around his waist. He glanced down at her thankfully, relieved that at least one constant in his life was still present.

"There is no easy way to say this… But you were all part of a test. A test that is part of an experiment for our people." Nick was interrupted by a chorus of upset cries… from everyone but Max, who had gone pale as death.

"Please! Just give me time to finish and hopefully you will understand and forgive us for our methods. It was desperate times." Nick looked at each of them in return, his eyes lingering on Max. "Our planet has been destroyed."

His announcement was met with silence.

"We had originally planned to send Max, Tess, Michael and Isabel to earth so that you could come back later, to save us. But we never had time to complete that plan. Your ship crashed, but Nacedo was able to save the four pods. As you know, he was later captured and by the time he found the pods again, you three were gone and only Tess was left."

Nick bent his head. "Some of us, in fact all of us in the camp apart from the children, fled just before the planet was destroyed. We came here to earth about twenty years ago to find you." He faltered. "I’m sorry, but your parents were… they were lost with the planet."

Isabel had begun to sob softly and Michael was staring at the table, utter desolation on his face. He was never going to meet any real parents after all.

Max was numb. Should he feel something? He guessed so, but Nick was talking about a planet and parents that he had never known.

Taking a deep breath, Nick went on. "Our King and Queen were dead, but their children were still alive. Here, on earth. It took us a long time to find you, but we eventually did after Nacedo managed to learn from his army contacts that there was a suspicious shooting at the Crashdown in Roswell and that the FBI was investigating it. I sent Nacedo there to make contact with you, to test you to see if you really were the three missing children we were looking for. It took some time, but when Michael left that sign at the library, we were certain. So in essence, that day Max saved Liz was the first day we had all began to hope again."

The group around the table seemed unable to respond. "We have been watching you since that sign at the library. We were amazed at first that you all seemed to have become almost human. That you could live… among this other race almost effortlessly. And our initial plan needed to be adapted after the destruction of our planet. We had been living in this small community for twenty years. We needed to adapt or else there would be no legacy of our once proud race but a group of stragglers dying out on a strange planet."

"Since we had all been genetically programmed with specific mates when we were born, we needed to see how that would be affected if we lived among humans. We needed to see what would happen to our children." He looked at Max again, but Max would not meet his eyes. "We saw how close Max was to Liz, but we also knew that Tess was his genetic mate. So we sent her and Nacedo to you to see what would happen." Max’s head snapped up at this. He remembered the heartache Tess had caused Liz and his eyes turned black with anger.

Nick continued hastily, but his voice was uncertain. "We saw how you fought Tess’ hold over you. How important Liz was to you. That there seemed to be something between you and Liz that was so much stronger than our genetic coding. We didn’t know what that was, but we hoped it would be something that could save us… something that all of us and our children could use to become part of this planet." His voice trailed lower. "But we were not prepared for it being so much more."

Max was starting to get up. "I don’t think I can listen to much more of this! You treated us like lab rats!"

Liz held on to him. "Please Max, give him a chance." They stared at each other, Liz’s eyes pleading as she rubbed her hand up and down his arm. Everyone let out an inaudible breath as Max finally sat down again, his mouth in a tight line and his actions clearly indicating that he was doing it only because Liz asked him to.

Nick turned his attention to Liz. "We weren’t sure what to do at first. But we knew we needed to find out what the potential was for integrating with humans. So we brought you all here. To… to test the strength of Max and Liz’s bond."

This time Liz gasped.

"It was so much stronger than we had ever anticipated. I could see that first day that Max knew Liz was in the camp. He even knew where she was. Nothing in our genetic coding was that specific. This ‘love’ you kept talking about was not something we were familiar with, so we needed to explore the impact of it on genetic coding and on the possibility of us staying here on earth, among humans. And before you ask, we had nothing to do with Tess’ little attempt to brainwash Liz."

Liz could feel Max’s agitation rising, but she didn’t know what to do to help him. This was probably the furthest from anything that he had ever expected to hear. All she could focus on was the fact that nothing that Nick had said so far meant that she and Max couldn’t be together for the rest of their lives. Nick’s voice interrupted her reverie.

"It soon became clear how in tune Max was to Liz. Just as he knew where she was, he also knew if something was wrong with her. That left us with trying to see how Liz… how any human would fit in with our race. It was more imperative to study her than any of you since… since she was with Max, our leader. And because they seemed to have the strongest bond."

Max felt like he was going to explode. How could Nick just sit there and tell them calmly that he had been studying them the whole time? That he had been studying Liz. He felt like strangling the guy. "This is totally unacceptable to me. You put all of our lives in danger. You let that Jans guy be with Liz everyday, not to mention that what you did led to Tess trying to… How could you call yourselves our people if this is how you treat us? Was the little abduction scene from yesterday part of the whole plan?"

Nick shifted in his seat. "Not entirely. We were initially just going to test and see if Liz can sense you the way you do her. Jans trying to… Jans distorted the whole plan. You were just supposed to be missing for a few hours, until she could find you. We never intended for everyone to think you were dead…"

Max was on his feet by now, but Nick pleaded with him. "I cannot tell you how sorry I am about Jans… It was terrible to see how devastated Liz was and I… I felt the same way. Devastated and guilty…"

"I thought you said you didn’t know emotions." Max’s voice had a sharp edge to it.

Nick looked at Liz who was staring at him, her eyes filling with tears. "Apparently we do… We just didn’t know we could, or what they were. Liz, I’ve come to care a great deal about you. You see, Max and Isabel’s father Aaron was my uncle. And I cannot tell you how much it meant to me that you found Max for us yesterday. And that you love him so much." The last part was said softly, hesitantly as Liz’s tears finally spilled over. "Thank all of you, for loving these three and making them part of humanity."

Max couldn’t stand to see Liz cry, so he took her hand and pulled her up against his chest. He gave Nick a long look, one that spoke of disillusionment and pain and started to leave the tent, Liz curled protectively against his side.

"Max, wait." As always, Liz’s voice got immediate reaction. Liz turned back to Nick. "Could you leave us, please? We need to talk about this."

The six looked at each other after his departure. So, there was no planet to go back to after all. No one would be coming for them soon.

Isabel was still sad. "I think we need to give ourselves time to let this all sink in. Why don’t we talk again tomorrow?"

It was a subdued group that got up from the table and left for their tents in pairs. Many thoughts were going through their heads. ‘We are staying on earth for the rest of our lives. We will never meet our parents. How is this going to affect us?’

Liz turned to Max when they got back to their tent. She could feel his confusion, his anger and his pain and she hugged him, trying to take some of it into her own body. His arms came around her in a crushing embrace. She kissed him on his cheek. "It's going to be okay." She prayed she was right.

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