FanFic - Max/Liz
"Fight the Break of Dawn"
Part 13
by Ash
Disclaimer: All glory goes to Melinda Metz and the makers of the show Roswell for giving us these brilliant characters. All bow before TPTB! Iım just borrowing them to flesh out some ideas that won't leave my head! No infringement intended!
Summary: Two years after Tess is finally out of their lives, the six move on with life after graduation. But are alien relationships ever going to be simple? More danger is approaching as they move toward learning more about their origins.
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: PG
Authors Note: This is an alternate reality to WB's Roswell. My characters are in line with the show up through "Sexual Healing" and then we deviate into "Captivated by Darkness", the prequel for this story. My storyline doesn't follow the show at all from there, so try not to be confused! Title from the song "Save Tonight" by Eagle Eye Cherry Dedication: to Angie, webmistress for "The Max and Liz Project", who is an awesome writer and a great encouragement to me.
Michael looked up in surprise when Alex and Maria came into Liz's bedroom.

"That was quick," he said as he pushed himself off the wall where he had settled himself to wait. He involuntarily took a deep breath, suddenly realizing how nervous he had been to be alone with Liz.

He looked at Maria and winced at the look on her face.

Yep, she was going to rake him over the coals for this one. But he deserved it, he knew.

Alex walked into Liz's bathroom, leaving Michael and Maria to look at one another questioningly.

"Uh... Alex," Maria began, following him. "What are you doing?"

Alex appeared almost immediately, holding two pills in his hand.

"This is her migraine medicine," he stated. "She should take this as soon as she wakes up. You two stay with her and I'll go call Max."

Michael watched Alex exit and frowned.

"How did he get here so quickly, Maria?"

"He was already stopping by to check on her, so I just pulled him up here. He's going to call Max."

"Yeah, yeah, I got that."

Maria stared at him for a moment, then shook her head.

"I'm going to go talk to Mr. and Mrs. Parker real quick. Maybe it's best if you don't stay in here alone."

Michael stared at her, then looked away.

"Yeah, okay. See ya."


Bodies tangled, skin against skin, heavy breathing... sweating, touching, moaning...

Feeling the world in one impossible, incredible embrace until-

Max suddenly awoke, disoriented for a moment in the darkness.

What a dream...

He forcefully calmed down his breathing, his mind automatically drifting to Liz.

Less than four weeks to see her now, hold her again...

Max groaned and turned over on his side.

Maybe they could get married at the end of the summer... if he didn't spontaneously combust before then.

If his dreams got any better, he probably wouldn't make it that long...

Max grinned.

But they certainly were making the wait more fun.


Michael sat motionless on the couch, his face a study in contrasts. The soft glow of the morning sun warmed one side of his face, highlighting the shadowy angles the sun couldn't touch.

The crease of worry gradually appearing on his forehead testified to the fact that he only seemed inanimate. And the palette of colors at his feet proved that he had been otherwise occupied earlier.

In fact, it was the object on the easel that held his attention now.

The canvas showed a few patches of the green grass and the golden-crimson river, but the purple splotches had almost entirely obscured them from view. The butterflies had been so close that they were out of focus, the shapes blurred into blobs of intense color.

While Michael had been painting, the recent events receded in his mind, allowing him to forget.

But now that the painting was done, Michael was having a hard time not letting it affect him. That purple...

Michael ran a hand over his mouth.

It was obvious that Liz's nightmares were getting worse; the pain he was somehow giving her was getting worse.

He had to stay away from her, so he couldn't hurt her anymore.

Or Maria.

He pushed at the tense knot between his eyes. He didn't even want to think about how Maria was feeling. Was she ever going to speak to him again? The thought bothered him more than he ever imagined possible. But the look on her face last night...

Michael shook his head and started collecting up his paints.

He had tried so hard in the beginning to keep her out of his heart, afraid that his non-existent upbringing had made him completely unable to be a lover, a soulmate the way she wanted. But somehow, she made him want her, made him need her.

And now, the thought of her turning away from him, because of something he couldn't control... it made him feel like pleading for forgiveness and punching somebody out all at the same time.

Yeah, okay, maybe he wasn't ready to get engaged or anything formal. And he had been completely pissed off by the fact that Max was ready, was able, to make that commitment to Liz. Michael still had so much to do before he would feel ready... so much to do before he would feel worthy of Maria.

And this... this was definitely NOT helping him feel ready. If he couldn't even keep his hands off Maria's best friend, the one who happened to be engaged to his best friend...

Michael shook his head in disgust.

Max was probably on his home way now, if Alex had called him last night.

It was a bit surprising to Michael that Max hadn't called right away to chew his butt off. Maybe Alex hadn't told him everything... maybe he was going to let Michael handle that.

Michael groaned at the thought of explaining this mess.

"Now see, Max, this is a painting of what your girlfriend... (oh crap) fiancee, saw when I kissed her. Now this is a more recent painting of her subconscious dream world from our last kiss. Doesn't it seem like she's edging toward insanity to you?"

Yeah, right, like Max would let him get that far. In fact, Max probably wouldn't let him speak at all before he kicked his ass. And the way Michael felt, he'd let Max kick his ass. In fact, if there were a way to do it, Michael would kick his own sorry ass.

He ran his hands through his hair and ripped the painting off the easel.

He desperately wanted to go to the Crashdown and check on Liz... and Maria.

As he tossed the painting in the closet with the others, his hand brushed against the wall of the closet and he jerked his hand back in pain.

"Crap," he spat out as he nursed the cut on his hand.

Glaring at the closet, he reached over and finally turned on the light. A nail was sticking out, just under the top shelf.

Checking the cut, he frowned to see the blood running down his hand. It was actually pretty deep.

Michael cursed himself as went to the sink and ran his hand under the cold, running water.


Liz became aware of her surroundings slowly, unwillingly pulled from her slumber by pain.

Her head was filled with intense throbbing, so full that almost no thoughts existed besides the awareness of pain... and shallow breathing... and twisted sheets... and a sharp stinging in her hand.

She squinted down at her hand, lifting it up to the filtered light. Nothing was wrong. She expected to see a... a something... but the word wouldn't come to her fuzzy mind.

Her eyes closed, but the feel of someone grasping her outstretched hand made her fight to open them again. They were so heavy...

"Take your medicine, Liz," a voice said.

It was familiar, but the name wouldn't come to mind...

Liz exhaled loudly in frustration.

Finally forcing her eyelids open a crack, she saw a shadowy figure holding out a glass of water.

The pills were already in her hand, which still felt like it had a... cut. That was the word.

There, she wasn't losing her mind.

Triumphantly, Liz stuck the pills in her mouth. The cool water felt good against her parched throat and she gulped the entire contents of the glass.

Just that one act exhausted her and she laid back against the pillows, giving in to darkness almost immediately.


Another double shift because of Liz.

Maria sighed and reminded herself that Liz *was* her best friend and she'd very willingly do this for her in return. Although obviously, the threads of friendship didn't stretch to include honesty in the boyfriend-kissing department.

She slammed down an order and barked it at Jose.

"What's wrong, hot stuff," he grinned at her. "Customers gettin' in your way? Just run 'em off. I won't tell no one."

She smiled at him sarcastically and turned back to the cafe.

Just then, the door opened and in walked Doug Shellow.

Maria rolled her eyes but crossed to the counter as he saw her and sauntered over.

The smile on his face was so *genuine* and *sweet*, it made her want to barf.

"Hi, Doug."

"Maria, is Liz in?"

Maria forced the smile to remain on her face, despite the cold bands of suspicion that were tightening around her heart.

"Yeah. She's in bed, though. Another migraine."

Maria watched in amazement as his grin actually grew bigger for just a split second, then his face fell in disappointment.

Was this guy for real? He had looked happy that she was sick...

"That's awful. Must be allergies or something," he said, a radiant smile breaking across his face. "Tell her that I've been thinking about her. Tonight's going to be a big night for her."

"What," Maria studied his face carefully.

"I just mean, it's important that Liz get enough rest tonight, if she's ever going to kick this thing over. And, Maria, you be careful and don't catch what she's got. It could bring some serious bad vibes," Doug watched her suspicious face with something nearing enjoyment. "See ya, Maria."

Her breaths were coming short and fast as she watched him walk out.

That was a warning. He was warning her.

Did he know what was going on with Liz?

Maybe... who was she kidding. He was obviously trying to make her think that he did, even if he didnıt. So *should* she run after him and make him tell her?

As she tried to envision him cowering in fear of her and confessing everything, she barked out a short laugh. What would she do, annoy him to death? Yeah, real threatening.

She was getting way too much into this.

Besides, if she left her post, Mr. Parker would chew her small, bony butt off.


To hell with it.

That guy's up to no good, Kyle thought as he watched Doug walk out of the cafe.

He stood up and took his check to the register, nodding at Maria as he went by.

He wanted to stay and reassure her that everything was fine, that he would find out what the jerk was up to, but he didn't want Doug to get away.

That guy warranted some serious attention. Like now.


Michael had finally forced himself to go to the Crashdown, although he was in serious doubt as to whether it was a good idea or not.

Maria wasn't speaking to him. She bustled around the room like there were more than five customers there. And it was making him nervous. He had gotten the silent treatment before, but never with a total lack of communication.

She wasn't even glaring at him. He felt like he was in Siberia, facing an ice storm too big to dodge.

And he hadn't even worn a coat.


Liz had a bright smile on her face as she headed down the stairs.

Her mind felt so much more clear now. That medicine was wonderful, although it had taken two doses before it took effect.

Now her thoughts were consumed with her fiance and the life ahead of them. She had already concocted about three different fairytale endings for them, and the current one had her staying at home with their fourth child while he had a lively pediatric practice. Max had such a gentle nature that she was sure he'd be a natural with kids. Of course, Liz wasn't exactly sure that she wanted to stay at home, but she could change that in the next daydream. Maybe the one that started with a month-long honeymoon...

"So, Liz, you're up. Feeling better?"

Liz looked up with a vacant expression as Maria walked over.

"Yeah, I'm much better, sorry you were worried."

She looked at her strained face and smiled in apology.

Maria gave her a quick hug, then stepped back, watching her eyes carefully.

"Any more bad dreams?"

Liz stood completely still, her glance falling on a nearby table as she thought.

Dreams? Something was tickling the edge of her mind... something she didn't really want to remember. She would much rather think about the future. And a smile crept up on her face as she thought of Max.

"Liz," Maria's sharp voice stunned her out of dreamland again.

"What," she looked around at her, a little frightened by her tone.

"You do remember last night, don't you?"

Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Michael approaching.

"Um...," Liz sighed in frustration and glared at Maria. "Of course I do."

Maria didn't look totally convinced, and she completely ignored Michael, much to Liz's confusion.

"Hi, Michael," Liz greeted him pointedly.

Maria went on, "Well, what did Max say about it?"

"I haven't had a chance to call him today, I've been sick in bed, remember," Liz raised her eyebrows.

"Wasn't Alex supposed to call Max last night?"

"Um... about what. I was going to tell him all about the date later," she said idly as she started to walk back behind the counter.

A hand grabbed her arm and pulled her back around. It was Michael, his voice tense.

"Alright, Liz, what the hell is going on? What about the dream?"

Liz blinked.

"This is all about a dream I had? Guys, I'm fine. Don't worry so much. Max will back in a month and I'm the happiest girl in the world. So don't be so glum."

Liz shook her head as she pushed through the doors. She had much more important things to think about... should they go to the mountains for the beach for the honeymoon?

Hmm... Max in a swimsuit or Max in a parka...

I'll take him either way, Liz smiled to herself.


Maria watched Liz smile and go into the back.


Michael was practically shouting, "I've been wrenching my guts out over this one and she doesn't even remember? And, what'ıs with the freakin' Pollyanna act?"

"Just calm down, Michael. I have no idea. But she is not fine." Maria frowned, then noticed Alex walking in the door. "There's Alex. Let's ask him what Max said."

Maria called out to Alex and he walked over to the counter.

"Hey, guys, what's shakin'? How about a root beer float?"

Maria blinked.

"Later. What did Max say," Maria hesitated at the blank look on his face. "You did call Max, didn't you?"

"Noooo. The last time I talked to Liz, she was going to talk to Michael about the weird kissing/connecting thing going on between them-" Alex interupted himself, holding up a hand. "don't ask me, Maria, I know nothing- and then we agreed she would call Max."

Alex halted abruptly as Maria's face went white. "Maria, what is it?"

"Michael," she whispered, getting a strong grip on his arm.

"Yeah, I know," Michael reassured her, then turned back to Alex. "You came back to the Crashdown after Liz's date and helped us decide what to do. You gave Liz some pills to give Liz and said you'd call Max."

"What? No, I dropped her off and took Kyle's car back to him," Alexıs eyes grew wide, then a sly smile slid across his face. "Oh man, you really had me going there for a minute. Is this to get me back for that tape I made of you two back during the school year? Look, I was just tired of hearing that nothing was going on between you-"

"Whitman, shut up," Michael interupted. "This isn't a joke. You were here after her date; we talked to you; you came upstairs. Are you saying that it wasn't you?"

Alex looked back and forth between them for another moment.

"It wasn't me," he said simply. "Whoever that was..."

The three of them exchanged glances.

"... oh god..."


"It wasn't me."

Max felt like he couldn't breathe. All the feelings he'd had of well-being, of Liz perfectly safe and the happiness the dreams had brought... it all came crashing down around him in seconds.

Nasedo was back.

"I'm coming home. Izzy and I are both coming home. I'll call you when we get the flight. Alex- Alex, don't leave Liz alone. Okay? She's my life," Max put every bit of feeling into the words that he could. "Keep her safe, please."

"You got it."

There was steel in Alexıs tone and Max felt slightly relieved as he hung up.

But Nasedo? If Nasedo was back and Liz was getting sick from something Michael was doing to her...

Oh god, he had to get home... now.

Max unclenched his fists slowly.

And he was going to try really, really hard to wait to beat the hell out of Michael until AFTER he heard the whole story... but it wasn't going to be easy.

Right now, he was going to call Liz, after he started breathing again.


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