FanFic - Max/Liz
"A Stitch in Time - Revised"
Part 30
by Lynda
Disclaimer: Dear Ms. Metz and Mr. Katims, can Max and the others come to my house to play? I'll try to have them back in time for dinner. Thanks, loon.
Summary: AU Fic. No spoilers. Max had thought just being an alien would fulfil the 'weirdness quotient' for his whole life, but now he had to cope with the concept of aliens from the future. And not just 'good' aliens from the future. There was a whole organization of 'bad' aliens from the future and he, Isabel and Michael had been recruited to help stop them.
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: Dedication: to Addison, my first fan.
Max slept on, emotionally and physically exhausted. He dreamt that he was sitting alone on the wide bench in front of Liz's lake, wrapped in her quilt. The peaceful serenity of the scene was a balm to his emotional state. After a time he noticed a figure walking out of the woods toward him. Max sat up and peered intently in that direction. As it came closer he realized it wasn't Liz. He closed his eyes and lay back on the bench. His heart sank and he felt her loss anew.

"Hello, sir."

A male voice close by startled Max and he sat up. His mouth dropped open. "Dave Parker?"

"In the flesh, so to speak." Dave sat cross-legged on one end of the bench facing Max, studying him as if he was making a judgement.

Max was amused by this evaluation and asked, "Whose dream is this?"

Dave smiled Liz's crooked smile and Max's heart lurched at the resemblance. "What do you say about sharing it? I haven't done this much and as far as I know, we're both sleeping."

"What we're doing is called dream walking."

"Thanks, it's always nice to be able to name things." Dave studied his hands for a moment. "Sir, I want to thank you again for helping me protect my mother. I'm relatively new at this 'dream walking' and sometimes I can't find her. I can feel that she is sad or needs me but I just can't always get to her."

Max reached out his hand. "My name is Max Evans." Ghost or not, it never hurt to be polite.

Dave shook hands with him and looked like he had more questions. "That's my mom's quilt, isn't it." He looked like an incredibly unhappy and lonely seventeen-year-old.

Max unwrapped from Liz's quilt and placed it around Dave's shoulders. He smiled sadly. "You look like you need it more than I do."

Dave's eyes watered and he turned his face away, bringing the quilt up to brush his cheek. "Vanilla. It still smells like the lotion she uses." Max placed his hand on Dave's shoulder and looked out at the lake to give him some privacy. "Mr. Evans, do you know what's going on? Why am I here— on a space ship, for god's sake— and why won't they let me go home." Dave's voice was so soft Max had to strain to hear it. "She thinks I'm dead, doesn't she." A quiet sob escaped him.

Max suddenly didn't care if he was dealing with Dave's ghost or the real Dave come dream walking. There was no way he could sit there and let this anguished soul go uncomforted. He wrapped his arms around Dave's quilt wrapped form and rocked him like he was his own son.

When he thought Dave was listening again he began to tell him what he knew of the situation. Part way through Max's story Dave remembered he was seventeen and sat up straighter. Max released him and finished telling him about the present day Al'Centrans, the future Al'Centrans and the dissidents. He didn't know if Dave knew of Liz's present situation, but he didn't mention it. Dave was upset enough. Time enough for that later.

Dave looked back at him. "Thanks." He cleared his throat. "Thanks for telling me the truth about what's going on and especially thanks for taking care of my mother for me. She's had it rough."

Max was touched and had to struggle to keep his voice normal. "It seems that it's a full time job looking after that stubborn mother of yours, but it's one that I will undertake whole-heartedly."

All of a sudden Max was struck with a realization. He didn't know how, but this was not a ghost. This was Liz's son! Her heart was right. He was still alive. "Oh my god. Dave— you're alive!" Max leapt to his feet and faced his mate's son, his face alight in joy. "Dave, we have to tell her!" Then Max remembered that Dave didn't know about Liz. Oh shit. He wanted to tell him face to face. "Are you able to get to the cabin where I'm staying or should I try to find you? In the real world, I mean. Not dreamwalking. I'm in cabin 6B."

"Be there pronto! I'm just down the corridor. It won't take me a minute to jimmy the lock."

Max woke himself up and sat on the edge of his bed. His head was spinning with all the incredible events that had happened in the last few hours. He stood up and began to pace, trying to figure out how to tell Dave about Liz's current situation. All too quickly he heard a quiet knock on his door and when he opened it Dave slipped in and closed the door.

Dave reached out his hand and said, "Mr. Evans, I'm pleased to meet you in person."

Max shook his hand again and reminded him, "It's Max, please. And it is definitely a pleasure to meet you. Your mom has told me a lot about you. Have a seat on the bed. I'll take the chair. We've got a lot of talking to do." He chuckled a bit. "They lock you in your room? I know they are very serious about protecting the continuity of the timeline, but that's a bit extreme."

"Oh, they let me out to get exercise; they have reserved a small exercise gym for my sole use to try and keep my exposure to their people to a minimum. In fact, I would appreciate it if you didn't mention we've communicated. I don't know what they'd do if they thought I knew too much about the wrong thing. They keep saying it's important for me to return me to Earth, but it's been so long, I don't know if I trust them."

"How did you find me tonight when you were dream walking?"

"I dream of the lake often. Only it's usually Mom sitting on the bench. I thought I remembered you from that other dream and went over to see for sure. Why could I communicate with you and not with my mother? I can see her and feel her sorrow but I can never make her see me or hear me.

A thought occurred to Max. "Dave, what do you know of your heritage? Has your mom talked about it?"

"I gather that you, your sister, and friend are, what did you call it? Al'Centran? Well, I think my grandma was, too, from the stories Mom told me. Only we didn't know the name Al'Centran, we just knew she wasn't from around here. Mom's adoption was never a secret in our house. I don't know what we are and I don't think Mom does either. We can both do some things, you know, things most people can't do. We've always kept it a secret just between us three. But I don't think we were the same as Gram. She called us 'odd ducks.'"

They sat in silence, each occupied with their own thoughts. "Dave, I don't know if you already know this and, I want to reassure you that we're going to do everything we can." Max paused and looked him steadily in the eyes. "There's no easy way to say this so here it is right out: the dissidents have kidnapped your mom and taken her through the portal to the generation ship I told you about."

Before he could add further details, Dave sprang to his feet and faced away from Max. "FUCK! Hasn't she suffered enough?? Can't she ever get a break??!" he yelled at the ceiling. Max was startled with how rapidly Dave moved. The kid had incredible reactions.

"Dave! The situation is bad, but there are still many things on our side. I told you my sister and friend are already on the generation ship and they know about Liz. They are already working to get her to safety. And the Al'Centrans who live on the ship will help them. We'll be there in two days— less than a day and a half now."

Dave came back and resumed his cross-legged posture on the bed. "I am so ready for this all to be over." He leaned forward and scrubbed at his face. He didn't know why, but he felt an instant trust in this stranger. And he believed his reassurances.

"Dave, do you feel like telling me your end of the story? What happened in Denny's house? Do you know how you got here on this ship?" He had known Liz's son for just minutes, but he already felt respect and fondness for him. He was dealing with an extreme situation with grace and courage. Max thought he knew where Dave learned how to do that.

Dave stood up and began to pace. "I think better on the move." In a moment he stopped and looked at Max. "Denny's really dead, isn't he."

\\Just like his mother in so many ways,\\ Max thought. "I'm sorry, Dave. His body was identified in the wreckage after the fire; they had his dental records so I'm afraid there is no question it was him. Who was the other body that everyone thought was you? There were no medical or dental records to tell them it wasn't you."

"I don't know. Den and I were involved in a big project and it was too late for me to get home so I stayed there. I woke up in the middle of the night and heard shouting and thumping around like someone was fighting. When I got downstairs Denny was lying on the floor and a man was spreading gasoline around. I ran over and found Denny unconscious.

"I had just started to drag his body outside when the gasoline ignited." Dave looked down at his hands and Max could see him trembling. "I started to burn. And that's all I remember until they took me out of one of their regeneration tanks." He lifted his hands and studied them. "They grew me new skin. But I still remember what it felt like to burn."

He looked over at Max. "You said there were two bodies found in the wreckage? Then that bastard burned. Good." For a moment his face looked much older than his seventeen years.

Max wanted to erase that look from his face. "Dave, I'd like to try something, with your permission. I'd have to touch your face." Dave nodded cautiously. Max scooted the chair closer and reached out with his hand. "You're the one who installed those incredible defensive reactions in your mother, make sure you don't hurt me…"

He was rewarded with a smile so very much like Liz's. "She wouldn't let me give her the full out lethal ones like I wanted.

Max smiled reassuringly and initiated the connection. Then he began to show Dave scenes of his mom, happy ones. He shared the sound of her laughter when his sneakers got full of water, the pride she displayed when she showed him Dave's computer, the peaceful look on her face as she sewed in front of her window with the sun on her hair, her small still figure sitting on the bench by the lake saying goodnight to the lake. He ended the connection and sat back in his chair.

"Thanks," Dave said in a quiet voice as he sat there immersed in happy memories. He looked up at Max, a peaceful expression on his face. "You love her, don't you."

"With all my heart and soul."

"I'm glad." Dave stood up and said, "I'd better get back to my room before they miss me." "I think I can get the captain to let us get together without giving your visit away. I'll talk to him as soon as I can. Go on back and get some sleep. I want us to try to link up and reach your mom."


"Kind of. I'll explain when it's time." He walked to the door and peeked into the corridor to make sure it was empty. "The coast is clear."

Dave walked out the door then turned around and stuck his head back in. He raised his right hand and gave Max the Vulcan salute. "Live long and prosper." The gleam of amusement in his eyes grew, spoiling the stoic face he was trying for. He nodded and closed the door.

Max laughed and shook his head. Liz was right about his sense of humor.

Part 29 | Index | Part 31
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