Fanfic - Crossover Stories
"Distant Connections"
Part 6
by Irene
Disclaimer: Roswell, the characters, and the situations are owned by Regency Television and 20th Century Fox. No infringement intended.
Summary: This is in response to crossover challenge issued by Carol on the RoswellDreamGirl list. Being a fan of both, I couldn't pass it up. . . Disclaimer: the usual; I bow down to the great and powerful Katim's and company, by whose good graces I mangle these characters. . .
Category: Crossover Stories
Rating: PG
Tess shrank back visibly from them and Max could see the defiance starting to color her cheeks.

As much as he'd wanted to trust her, wanted to believe her silence had just been ill-thought out or an oversight, he couldn't help sensing a sickly guilt coming from her now and he wondered briefly how he could have mistaken its meaning before.

"What are you hiding, Tess?" he asked, his jaw tightening.

Folding her arms across her chest, she boldly turned her back to them.

Superman took a step forward as if to help, but Max waved him away. Tess was his problem.

He let out a heavy sigh. "Look, you know I'm going to find out. Wouldn't you rather just tell me?"

Tess spun back on her heel. "What? And turn up the chance to be kissed by the great Max Evans?" She glared at Liz. "That's right, Lizzie. Max sees things when he kisses me, too. Max and I had a connection back before you were even born. . ."

Taking Liz's hand and giving it a squeeze, Max turned to see her shaking her head at Tess, clearly non-plussed.

"Big revelation, Tess," she said calmly, but he could see the tension in her jaw and ached to smooth it away with a finger. There was a fire in Liz's eyes now and he loved her for it. "You should know when you've been beaten."

"Hey, Charles and Lady Di!" Kyle said, jumping in, clearly done with navel-contemplation and phony Buddhist meditations. "I thought the war was back on . . . on whatever planet it was you crawled out from under!" He slung an arm around Tess's shoulders protectively. "She told you what you wanted to know. Who cares why she didn't tell you before?!"

Max bit his tongue, then changed his mind and said it anyway.

"How can I trust her when she picks and chooses what she thinks I need to know?" he spat out. "And why wouldn't she tell me about this? We all have our powers-this is just one more." Anger rising, he stepped closer to her, close enough to see the cracks starting to form in her defiant stance. Guiltless, he charged on. "We've fought and almost lost, Tess! In Copper Summit! Here in school! We almost died! If I'd known I could do even a quarter of what Clark can do, none of that would have had to happen! If I was given this . . . this gift to help us all, why-why wouldn't you tell me about it?!" Giving up the pretense entirely, Tess had buried her head in Kyle's arms, sobbing softly. "I . . . I just don't get it, Tess. If we're in this together, how couldn't keeping silent, in the end, hurt you as much as me?"

But then, that was it, wasn't it? She wanted to hurt him. Because he didn't love her.

"Is that was this is all about? Getting back at me?"

Tess looked up from Kyle's arms at this last, moving away from him as if to distance herself. "Not everything is about you, King Max," she said, blue eyes flashing as her tears dried. "Maybe this was about me. Just me." She was chewing her lip again when she turned back to the cliff's edge and Max knew whatever it was she was going to say, she did not want to say it.

"Are you gonna explain that?" Michael growled, suddenly finding his voice.

Tess was shaking her head when she faced them again and Max would be damned if she weren't standing there laughing. . .

"You think things are so different this time around?" she asked, eyes narrowed, glued to Max's. "You think you're so righteous because you've chosen your own destiny here on Earth?" She regarded him with what looked like pity. "History repeats, babe. Always has. Always will." She spun around, waving her arms before her, gesturing to the land beneath them, the sky above, their bodies themselves. "Different stage, different costumes, same old show. . ."

He didn't like what she seemed to be saying. He didn't like it at all.

Neither, would it seem, did Kyle. He was staring at her wide-eyed, possibly trying to reconcile this Tess with the one that lived in his house and cooked for him and his father. . .

But Tess was on a tear now, clearly bent on getting it all out now that she'd started, regardless of the shock on Kyle's face. Or anyone else's.

"That whole story your mother spun . . . about Isabel and Michael. . . about you and me? That's what she wanted you to believe. That's what they wanted everyone to believe, Max. The beautiful, harmonious Royal Family. Shit, I wanted to believe it." Tess bit her lip. "And I thought that if I let you believe it, too, it . . . it could happen. Back on Antar, they thought that was the reason we were defeated-because the Royal House wasn't strong enough, wasn't united." She laughed grimly and cast a glance to the couples surrounding her. "But we are who we are, Max. As much as our families pushed us together, for the good of our people, we couldn't feel what they wanted us to feel." She broke off, spoke more quietly. "Or you couldn't, anyway. . ."

Max couldn't believe what she was saying. He'd only just begun to fully accept the new "reality" they'd been given last spring and here she was, switching histories on him?

"So you see, nothing has changed, Max. I was nothing to you then. I'm nothing to you now."

"Tess," Max said, softly, letting two-lifetimes of guilt wash over him. "I'm sorry-"

Max heard laughter to his left and saw Isabel folding her arms across her chest.

"Someone promised you a rose garden and you didn't get it," she said, eyes narrowed and pity in her tone. "That's what this is all about? You feeling left out-again?"

"This," Tess spat. "This is about control. When I found you, you three knew nothing about who you were. You could barely use your powers-"

"Wait," Lois broke in. "You four have powers, too?"

"Some, yes," Isabel said, nodding, taking a moment to switch gears, but very likely thankful to get to move her focus from Tess for a moment. "I can go into people's dreams and . . . and see what they're thinking. I can also communicate with them that way. Michael," she said, gesturing in his direction. "Has the ability to concentrate his energy and use it like a weapon. Tess. . ." Isabel broke off to glance angrily in Tess's direction. "Tess can make people see and hear things that aren't really there. . . . And Max," she said proudly. "Can heal-"

"Max can heal?" Clark asked, breaking his long silence. Max noticed a hint of awe in the man's voice and was pleased that his

. . . his brother was impressed.

Liz stirred at his side. "Last year, I was . . . I was shot at the Crashdown and if it weren't for Max, I would have died. . ." She found his hand again, held it tightly.

"Oh, boo-hoo!" Tess cried, drawing everyone's attention back where she clearly thought it belonged: to her. "Look, you want to know why I never told you about Jor-el, Max? The less you knew about what you could do, the more control I could have. And don't worry, if I'd ever felt we were seriously in trouble, I would have told you," she said, obviously responding to his look of utter shock.

But they had seriously been in trouble, had almost died twice now. Courtney had died. And none of it had had to happen.

Michael was seething. "Sooo. . . so as long as you held all the cards, blondie, you could dole out info whenever it suited you."

"I'm sorry, I know this isn't really my business," Lois said softly from behind them. "But why would Max need to be told he had these powers. Wouldn't he already know?" She looked to her husband, his cape flowing behind him in the wind. "No one had to tell Clark anything-he just found he could do these things. I mean, Max," she said, turning back to him. "Can you fly?"

Good question.

"Not as far as I know of," he said.

"That's because those genes are dormant," Tess chimed in, sullenly. "He would need to have contact with-"

"With me," Superman said suddenly.

"And as long as Max didn't know you existed, that would never happen. . ." Liz's voice was hoarse beside him, awed, it seemed, by the realization.

"And Tess, with her genocidal mind warp could be the end all and be all," Maria said, disgusted.

A hush fell over the group, or maybe it was the rushing of blood in his ears, but Max didn't hear Clark move until he was standing right beside him.

"I'm not sure how we do this, waking up those dormant genes of yours," Superman said gently, smiling. "But I can give you a taste of what you'll be able to do, once they are."

Max's heart skipped a beat, then started thumping wildly in his chest. What could he do?

He remembered the sensation, the first time he healed something, the exhilaration and the pain, the peace of it; watching the tiny furred creature as it scampered, reborn, up the nearest tree; the wonder he felt, knowing that he'd made it happen, at the same time knowing it was not something anyone else could do.

And now there was more?

He felt Liz lean into him, lending him her warmth and her support. Arm around her, Max gave the man a tentative smile.

"Well, I'm game if you are. . ."

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