Disclaimer: I don’t own any of the original characters
from “Roswell.“ They belong to Melinda Metz and Jason
Katims and the wonderful people at WB. I have invented
a slew of characters to go with ‘em, though and I hope
the originals aren’t too insulted to have them mix and
mingle and perhaps fall in love here or there. |
Summary: This has become an alternate universe over the course of the other three stories. It was in line with the show through “Sexual Healing” and then my own version of Tess hit the atmosphere in “Captivated by Darkness.“ Two years later, we picked up the story and began the mythology with “Fight the Break of Dawn,“ where Liz was transformed and they met Christopher in L.A. Next came “Fading Into Twilight” which was NOT a wedding fic, but did contain the ill-fated nuptials which led our characters to this point. Now, in my AU, remember that I diverge from the show and Sheriff Valenti is still an unknown quantity, Pierce doesn’t exist, my Tess is very dead (and deservedly so) and the Evans and Mrs. Parker know the truth about the aliens.
Authors Note: To Sheeijan and Abs, both of whom are excellent ‘backers and obsessors. Title comes from Remy Zero’s “Yellow Light,” featured in The White Room episode from season one.
|It wasn’t long after Liz calmed down that the phone
rang. Alex looked at her questioningly and she nodded.
He reached out a long arm to grab the receiver and
then handed it to her.|
“Lizzie,” her father’s voice sounded panicked. “Don’t come down here, no matter what you hear, okay?”
Liz’s eyes jumped to Alex’s face. “What is it, Daddy? Why not?”
“Two people are dead, Lizzie.” The horror in his voice made her grab at Alex’s arm. “Maybe food poisoning, maybe something else. We- we don’t know.”
In the distance, Liz heard a siren begin to wail.
“Oh my god,” she whispered, ignoring Alex’s gestures to tell him what was going on. Liz concentrated on her father. “Are you okay? What happened?”
“I’m fine. Your mother’s fine,” his voice was trembling. “I want you to stay upstairs, okay?”
“Okay, we will. But tell me- what happened?“
“Well, I gave the couple at table twelve their food- Blue Moon Burgers, cokes and a Mulder Malt. Nothing unusual. And then, I don’t know what happened. A few minutes later, they were screaming, clawing at their stomachs... throwing up blood and food- it was awful, Lizzie. I didn’t know what to do. I tried to help them, but they just died, Lizzie. Right there in front of me.”
Liz‘s mind clicked through the list of possibilities, despite her panic. “Daddy, don’t touch the food, or the bodies. Just stay away from them. And keep everyone else away, too. If it wasn’t the food, it could be something- communicable.”
“Right. I’m more afraid it might be food poisoning, but I don‘t see how. Just stay upstairs and get Alex to spend the night, because I don’t want you to be alone. This may- it may take a while.”
“Okay, Daddy,” Liz whispered, once again clutching Alex‘s arm. “I love you. Let us know something when you do.”
She hung up slowly, feeling completely unable to deal. The vague dread she had felt all day began to take on a new strain of horror. Obviously, this was it. This was what she’d been feeling coming all day.
She had no idea what the ramifications of this would be for her parents, but she couldn’t help but feel relieved that she hadn’t worried Max and Michael by telling them. Unless...
“What is it, Liz?”
She bit her lip as she looked at Alex. “Something’s happened.”
Max frowned as he watched Michael climb into bed. As usual, the other three would be asleep long before Max would. Besides it being his night for the cot, there was way too much running through his mind to relax.
Mostly the damn connection.
Max sighed loudly and buried his face in his hands. Christopher’s words had bothered him greatly. He and Liz should be the ones connected.
For example, right now, he was worried about her. She had been blocking Michael all night, for no apparent reason. Since this happened to be the first night she was spending at home, that had to mean something. And he couldn’t bring himself to believe that it was something good.
He looked at his watch. It was too late to call her. Midnight back home.
Max leaned back and put his feet up on the chair in front of him. Michael started snoring lightly. It was such a familiar sound that Max almost didn‘t register it. Not so with Maria. Out of the corner of his eyes, Max saw her sit up, reach across the night table and aim a pillow at Michael’s face. At least he thought it was Maria. It was hard to recognize her with all that hair. When she saw Max sitting in the chair, she rolled her eyes and punched the pillow back down on the bed. “’Night, Max.”
“Oh... funny,” came the muffled reply.
“Guys, I’m trying to sleep here,” Isabel complained.
“Sorry.” Max whispered quickly.
“Tell that to Captain Caveman over there,” Maria snapped. “Maybe you two were destined to be together, ‘cause I don’t think I can live with that in my ear every night.”
“Shut up and go to sleep!”
“Sorry, your highness,” Maria said easily. “Didn‘t mean to be a royal pain in the ass.”
Isabel groaned into her pillow. “GOOD NIGHT!”
Max smiled at their bickering. By now, it was as familiar to him as the darkness outside.
Liz’s eyes were closing of their own accord. She didn’t want to fall asleep; they hadn‘t heard anything from her father yet. She sat up straight and flipped the channel on the t.v. The A-Team was still on.
Definitely not “must-see t.v.” She stifled a yawn. For a while, there had been the constant commotion of loud sirens, voices and running trucks downstairs to keep her awake, as well as her tumultuous thoughts.
She and Alex had been over every bit of information her father had told her, trying to work out every possible complication and consequence. And since no one was answering the phone downstairs, it was all they had to go on.
She flipped the channels restlessly. Her brain was worn out with wondering. It was quiet as death downstairs now and the long nights of sleeplessness were catching up with her. Alex wasn’t helping much. He was sprawled out on the couch, his head on a pillow in her lap, out cold. It was amazing how quickly he could conk out.
Liz rubbed at her eyes wearily. The most frustrating part of it all was that the dread hadn’t gone away. It was a constant ache in her stomach and she was wishing like crazy that she could talk to Max about it. But it was too late now... surely they were all asleep. She knew Michael was. Of course, now that she wanted him, he was out cold.
She shook her head and stifled another yawn. Figured. But it could wait a few hours. At least she hoped so. She was perfectly aware of the fact that there might be a connection between the events downstairs and Kyle’s abduction and if there was...
Exhausted, she laid her head on Alex’s arm. Enough thinking. It was so quiet...
A scraping sound made her jump and lift her head. Had she been asleep? She blinked a few times, trying to clear her eyes. The clock said it was after one. Why hadn’t her father called yet? The seconds ticked by, filling her with a full measure of dread. Something was wrong. She should’ve called Max.
The doorknob rattled. Liz’s breath caught in her throat as she turned to look.
“Daddy,” she said in a tremulous voice.
Another scraping sound.
There were small clicking sounds... like... someone was picking the lock.
Liz turned back with a jerk and shook Alex’s shoulder, half trying to wake him and half trying to shove him off of her. “Alex,“ she whispered frantically. “Wake up!”
The lock clicked open.
Liz’s breath left her in a rush as she turned back to the door. The doorknob was turning...
They had to run.
Liz jumped to her feet and pushed Alex to the floor with a loud thunk.
“Whoa, I‘m up. I‘m up,” he mumbled, pushing himself to his knees.
Liz grabbed up under his arms and hauled him to his feet just as the door started opening... Liz whimpered. “Alex, we have to get out of here.”
“Why,” Alex mumbled and then froze.
It was too late. Someone was stepping inside the door...
Horror held Liz frozen in its grasp.
A faceless, visored helmet appeared above a neon yellow plastic bodysuit. It turned in their direction and the moonlight streamed onto its hand, illuminating the menacing silver gun there.
Alex jerked Liz behind him and began to move them back toward the hall. “What do you want,“ his voice was strong and Liz grasped at the back of his shirt as they moved.
A slow pffffft was the only reply. Alex jerked and was suddenly crumbling in front of her. “Alex!“ She grabbed at his arms, but he was too heavy. His weight fell to the side and she went down with him. His eyes were closed and there was a long, shiny dart sticking out of his chest. She yanked it out and felt the cold, heavy steel in her hands before tossing to the ground. “Alex?” He was perfectly still.
She looked up to see the intruder reaching for a pouch at his side, jerking another dart free. She stood slowly. Alex was lying on the floor, helpless, and she didn’t want to leave him. But the man was looking up at her, shoving the dart in the gun.
She couldn’t just stand there and- He raised the gun-
She fled down the hallway, cutting sharply to the right. Her chest was heaving, burning as she looked around her bedroom, a frantic cry breaking free.
The balcony- the fire escape-
She sprinted to the window and jerked the lock open. The pane was up in two seconds and she started to crawl through-
Then a plastic, neon yellow hand crashed down on her wrist and she screamed in terror, jerking back with all her strength. He was on her balcony, trapping her-
She twisted in his grasp, and tried to break away. But his grip was crushing her arm and it was too strong. She turned back with a cry and reached out to force his fingers off her wrist. The dart gun in his other hand stopped her. She noticed in between heaving breaths that it was aimed right at her abdomen. He couldn’t miss at that close range. But it didn’t go off.
She jerked helplessly in his grasp once more and looked up to the faceless helmet. What was he waiting for? The gun moved closer, until it was only inches away from her stomach.
She trembled in fear, looking from the faceless visor to the shiny point on the dart.
Max! Oh god, I need you.
She suddenly thought to unblock him, her emotions sending the thoughts screaming to him.
MICHAEL!! HELP ME!!! I NEED HELP! I NEED MAX!!
A sharp pain exploded in her abdomen and she convulsed as it took over her body.
Then haziness clouded her brain and she fell back... hearing nothing... and just... falling...
Max was standing by the window, looking out at the quiet nighttime sky when all hell broke loose.
A burst of power slammed into the wall beside him, cracking the window and burning up the curtains in an instant.
He heard Maria scream and the power reared inside him as he turned, expecting a hunter. But all his desperate eyes saw was Michael standing out of bed, holding his hands to his head in some kind of confusion. And, the two girls sitting up in the other bed, looking terrified. Max looked around the room quickly, but there was no one else. “Michael, what happened?”
Michael shook his head, pushing his fingers to his temple and closing his eyes.
A sudden thought speared Max’s heart. “Is it Liz?”
Michael’s eyes opened and the look on his face confirmed Max’s fears.
“No,” Max barely breathed out. “What is it?”
Michael didn’t answer and Max crossed to him, fierceness making his voice tight. “What happened, Michael?”
“I don’t know, okay? She’s sleeping now. I just- I was asleep. And then, the next thing I know, she’s screaming in my head and I’m trying to blast the son-of-a-bitch who shot her.” He looked shaken. “Except that I wasn’t there. And I almost blasted you. She’s fine now. It must have been a dream.”
Max shook his head in frustration. “Michael, what are you feeling from her now?”
Michael rubbed at his stomach oddly, sounding tense. “Nothing. Just Zs. Like I said- it must‘ve been a really bad dream.”
“Are you sure,” Maria asked in a nervous voice.
“Yeah, I‘m sure,” Michael sat back down on the bed, suddenly looking closed off.
Max sat down on the opposite bed, trying to calm his racing heart and remain in control. “Have you ever reacted that way to her nightmares before?”
Michael let his breath out in a huff. “No, okay? Would you just let it go? I don‘t know what the hell happened.”
Max stood to his feet and paced to the window, adrenaline pumping him full of energy. He leaned an arm against the pane. He should be the one connected to Liz right now. He clenched his jaw tight. But they did have some form of connection, right? Wouldn’t he know it if something were really wrong?
“Max, get some sleep,” Isabel said in a tired voice. “We’ll call her first thing in the morning.”
“We’ll call her now.” Max decided instantaneously and strode past Isabel to grab the phone. He dialed the number by heart and waited impatiently. His heart was pounding, his every bit of energy poured into wishing her safe. What if Isabel’s hunter had showed up there? What if the FBI had decided they needed another test subject? Oh god-
No one was answering. He slammed the phone down and paced back over to the window, where Isabel was finishing her job on the wall and the curtains. She was watching Max with concern. “No answer?”
Max shook his head.
“It’s because she’s asleep, right,” Maria asked timidly. “I mean, she’s sleeping, right Michael?”
“Right,” he said shortly.
“Max, you should get some sleep, too,” Isabel insisted. “We’ll try again tomorrow before we leave.”
“I know. But I couldn‘t sleep before,” he said by way of explanation. “And now I really can’t. Just go on to bed.”
He just barely heard her. His mind was cast out in the great void between he and Liz, working to sense her presence with him at all.
Alright, this decided it for him. They would drive straight through to Roswell. He had to see her. He couldn’t live like this.
Kyle was watching the scene before him like a zombie. He’d never seen anything like it. The entire Crashdown building was covered in plastic, swarming with guys in neon yellow suits, and surrounded by more trucks than there were in the Roswell Annual Pickle Day Parade.
He’d been here for hours, watching the busy men run around doing their mysterious jobs. What the hell was going on? He saw two more gurneys with patients wheeling through the plastic sheets hanging over the entrance. They still had two more layers of sheets before they reached the ambulance. This was all giving Kyle major E.T. flashbacks.
He could see his Dad on the other side of the line of trucks, trying to get some answers out of the official-looking guys in suits. Kyle was staying away, practically shaking in his boots just being near that many guys in suits. Bad, bad half-memories.
So far, all they knew was that two strange deaths at the diner had scared people bad enough to get the CDC out here.
And the CDC was, according to the flyer in Kyle’s hand, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. They were handing out propaganda to the crowd of onlookers by way of explanation.
“ON THE FRONT LINE-
*monitoring the environments in which we live, work
And so on and so on.
“Yeah, yeah,” Kyle muttered as he looked over the rest of the strange sheet. “Never realized stale onion rings could cause a ‘bioterrorism investigation‘.”
Another gurney appeared, carrying Mr. Parker. He looked freaked, but not sick. Behind him, came Mrs. Parker stretched out on another one, strapped in and completely hysterical.
“Where is Liz,” she was screaming. “Liz!”
Kyle watched them try to quiet her as they rolled her into one of the waiting ambulances. He was starting to feel sick to his stomach. Maybe he should’ve taken Liz’s advice and told his Dad about that night. Seeing Mrs. Parker strapped in like that...
Then his Dad walked over. “Dad, did you get anything out of the Feds?”
“Dammit, Kyle, they‘re not Feds. But no, I couldn’t even talk to Jeff before they got him out of there. Something about this isn‘t right.”
“Did you see Liz anywhere?”
“No. I heard Diane say that she had been upstairs with Alex, completely out of the situation, but I don’t think anyone has seen them since all of this happened.” His Dad sighed loudly. “I’m heading over to the hospital to find someone in charge of this three-ring circus. And we’ll check on Liz, too. That’s probably where they would have taken her if she had been exposed.”
Kyle nodded and took one last look at the restaurant through the hanging plastic sheets. Liz and Alex had been together, which was good. But if both of them were missing-
Kyle swallowed down the sudden bile in his throat. They had to be at the hospital.
|Part 7 | Index | Part 9|
|Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours|