|Disclaimer: Me no own-ie. Wish I did, but I don't. Sadness. Please don't
sue. All I have of value is my computer, and I reeeeeaaaally like it. I
also do not own the Lifehouse song I used, or any other songs I may have
Summary: It's been one month since Tess left Roswell (Departure), and the crew is trying to get back to a semi-normal state. But naturally, they find that impossible... especially when a familiar stranger returns to town with interesting (and disturbing) news...
Author's Note: This is my first fan fic, so I would appreciate feedback. I know we're pretty well into the third season already, but just bear with me, eh? ;-)
|Max tore his eyes away from Ava to look at Liz in surprise, and Liz could
hear other confused sounds from her friends behind her, including Kyle's
crystal clear "Huh?"|
Ava, on the other hand, seemed to go weak with relief. Gratitude filled her eyes, and she smiled back at Liz. "Liz, doll! I knew you'd recognize me!" She looked back at Max, and added, "Uh, would ya mind lettin' me go now, huh?"
Max blinked, still in shock, but obliged. "What... What are you...?" he stammered.
"What am I doin' here?" Ava finished for him in her heavy Brooklyn accent, straightening the front of her halter-top where Max had held her. "Just checkin' up on the Royal Four, yo. Is that like, a crime now or somethin'?"
It seemed that Ava had been wandering around the country for some time, hitching rides to everywhere from Boston to Los Angeles, but since Rath and Lonnie had killed Zan and then mysteriously disappeared themselves, she hadn't been able to find anywhere that felt like home. "So I came back to this lame-ass town, seeing as you bunch are the closest thing to the only freakin' family I've ever known," she finished.
The rest listened with interest, though Kyle still seemed rather confused. Max still couldn't help feeling uncomfortable around Tess' clone, although Liz assured him that Ava was no Tess. She had, after all, helped to save Max's life when he was in danger.
The group's acceptance of Ava was short lived, however. She had only just finished telling her story when she reached for a nearby glass of water, and that's when Maria noticed the strange ring she wore on her finger. It was a ring that bore a few of the alien symbols that they had all gotten to know so well in the last year, and Maria was sure that she had seen it somewhere before...
Isabel jumped, startled by a sudden gasp from Maria. All eyes turned to look at the petite blonde, who looked even paler then before, if that were possible. Her hands were at her mouth, and she was shaking.
"What is it?" Michael asked, looking very worried.
Maria pointed to Ava's hand, still shaking. "Last night... when the person who stabbed me jumped out, they grabbed my wrist, and they were wearing a ring just like that," she stammered. She stared at Ava. "It was you!"
For the second time in less then fifteen minutes, Ava found herself pressed against a wall and having her life threatened, but this time it was by Michael. "WHOA!" she yelled, attempting to push him back. "Would ya chill?!? I knew that the other Zan was up in here, and I knew he would save her, aight?!? I did it for a reason!"
Michael was still breathing hard, but he loosened his grip just a little. "Why should we believe you?" he growled. "You're just like Tess-"
"Screw you, asshole!" Ava spat, her eyes clouding with fury. "I'm nothing like that bitch, you get me? I had enough with the whole fuckin' power trip after Lonnie!"
Michael was so shocked that the tiny girl had stood up to him that way that he let her go. The others looked equally surprised at her behavior.
"What? Y'all forget I was born and raised beneath the great city of New York?" Ava said testily, glaring. "Now, if you'd all just let me explain, ya might learn somethin' important." Max was still looking at her skeptically, so she rolled her eyes and stuck out her wrists. "Look, if ya still don't believe me, tie me up or whateva, aight? But alla ya really need to hear what I got to say."
No one moved to hold her back, so Ava sighed and headed over to a booth, gesturing to the group to follow. She took a seat, and told Liz to take the one across from her. The rest gathered eagerly around to hear what Ava had to say.
Ava looked at Liz and began to speak. "Liz, doll, you remember back when we was all here the first time, yeah? When Rath and Lonnie took your Zan and his bitch back to the city?"
Liz nodded, and Max mumbled, "The name's Max."
Ava shrugged. "Whateva. Anyway, I told ya you was changed, remember? You know it. You was able to make him see you all the way in Manhattan. You don't got any idea why you was able to do that, do ya?"
Liz looked mildly puzzled and didn't answer, so Ava continued. "Look, Lonnie and Rath had their connections, right? Well I got mine, too. I've been talkin' with some of the group back home, and they've let me in on this Prophecy, aight?"
Isabel groaned. "I think I've had enough prophecies and destinies to last me six lifetimes."
Ava shot her an icy glare to silence her. "It's way whacked the way they fixed us all up to be reincarnations of the Royal Four, ya know? They's a paranoid bunch, those guys up there. They made two sets of us, not sure who was gonna turn out better. They gave my group all the memories, so we knew what we were there for. But it screwed us up and everything, ya know? 'Cause Lonnie remembered bein' the traitor and all, so she messed up Rath and killed Zan. So we were the rejects, and we got dumped.
"Then they made your group. They gave you your powers and all, but they hid all the old memories deep down in your minds somewhere where you couldn't get to 'em unless someone helped you along, ya know? That way you'd be more human then us. You think our people just picked any ol' freakin' planet to drop us on? Nah, they like the humans. They like the way they think and feel. I guess they figured you'd be more compassionate or somethin'. But what they didn't expect was that Kivar's peeps had messed with your protector and one of your incu-pods.
"They knew that one of the four of y'all would turn out to be a traitor, but they didn't know which one. But I guess the bitch gave herself away, huh? Anyway, they found out about the mess-up about seventeen Earth-years ago, right? The first and second groups of pod-people, that's us and you guys, weren't gonna come out for about seven more years, but they knew one of you would be the traitor and that we would mess up everything. So they decided to start up Mission Third Pod-Squad."
At this, Max fell over in his seat, and nearly everyone else gasped in shock. "Third? They made another group of us?" Max stammered, scrambling back into his seat.
Ava smiled at their reaction, clearly enjoying herself, and continued once more. "I told you they was a paranoid group, didn't I? That's not even the best part, though. The third group isn't us. At least, they don't look like us the way our two groups do. Our peeps had to be really crafty this time to make sure Kivar didn't catch on. So they figured the safest bet was to make the third group so much like humans that they would be impossible to tell apart from real humans.
"They decided that the third group would have to be like, awakened or somethin' by one of the two original Zan clones. Since my group wasn't lookin' so bright, they opted to abduct three pregnant chicks from the town nearest to where you guys were incubating, which was this place here. They took the chicks on board and used their superior alien techno-shit to change the growing babies. They imprinted all the same memories and powers into their cells that we have, but did it so the alien cells would stay dormant till they was activated by a Zan-clone."
Ava stopped, looking around as if she had just revealed some huge secret, only to meet six vacant stares. She rolled her eyes in frustration, looking at Liz. "Hello! Isn't you guys 'sposed to be some high-IQ geniuses or somethin'? Read the writing on the freakin' wall! When your Zan healed you, he activated your cells. You're the other freakin' Ava! Why do you think he was so into you from the first time he saw you?"
To her surprise, Liz laughed. "What? You can't be serious! Me, an alien? Whatever."
"Look. I told ya you was changed. Ya don't know how to use your powers yet, so I had to help you. What's Ava's power? Mind-trippin' other people. What did you do when I helped you? Made your Zan see you when you wasn't really there. Face it, babe. You're more different now then what you thought." The color was beginning to drain from Liz's face as the truth sunk in, and Ava jerked her head back towards Kyle and Maria. "And those two? They're along for the ride, too."
The group jumped at the sudden sound of something heavy hitting the floor, and they whirled. Maria was looking down in shock at the figure of Kyle on the linoleum floor. He had fainted.
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