|"Fight the Break of Dawn"|
Disclaimer: All glory goes to Melinda Metz and the
makers of the show Roswell for giving us these
brilliant characters. All bow before TPTB! I'm 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.
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 don't be confused! Title from the song "Save Tonight" by Eagle Eye Cherry Dedication: to Angie, webmistress for "The Max and Liz Project" (http://www.geocities.com/Area51/Neptune/9631/frontpage.html), who is an awesome writer and a great encouragement to me!
|Max had spent the last five minutes trying to find
exactly the right word to describe Jeff Parker's face
as he sat staring mutely back at him. |
Controlled? Amused? That was how he had started out at the beginning of the conversation.
But Max's reasoning had worn that down to a fine sheen.
And something else was beginning to show through it.
Was it fear?
Max wasn't quite sure what Mr. Parker was thinking, but he had a feeling it wasn't good.
After another minute of uneasy silence, Mr. Parker stood to his feet and walked over to the counter at the Crashdown. His head was down, his hand gliding over the countertop with pretended interest. He found a dirty spot and scratched at it with his fingernail.
Max just sat still, steeling himself for the moment to come, the answer that would, with all certainty, change his life.
The seconds ticked by...
Max took another look at Mr. Parker, then leaned over in his chair, resting his elbows on his thighs.
He shook his head as he stared at the floor.
This was worse than he thought. Mr. Parker couldn't even speak.
There had been other moments in this uncomfortable suitor- father relationship that had been strained. Max was, after all, forcing Mr. Parker to deal with the fact that his little girl had grown up into a beautiful, desirable woman. What father was ever ready to deal with that?
And so, Mr. Parker had put him through rigorous exercises, the purpose being to weed out unworthy or weakly constituted potential son-in-laws.
Basically exercises in futility for the desperate Mr. Parker, but necessary for his sanity, nonetheless.
There had been the "what-are-you-planning-to-do-with-your-life" showdown. Max had almost completely failed that one. He hadn't even thought much about college up to that point, much less a profession beyond graduation. Just trying to live the life of a normal high school junior despite being an alien was hard enough, without trying to figure out how to keep up the charade later on in life.
But he had managed to pull out a fairly coherent answer: he would write. He was better at that than anything else, and there were the obvious perks of working mostly anonymously at a computer.
Of course, Mr. Parker had looked doubtful that it would be a good enough answer for Mrs. Parker, who tended to be a bit overprotective of Liz, but he gave Max a smile, anyway.
After that, things were easier for a while, until the big "sex talk."
Max leaned back in his chair with a sigh, covering his slightly red face at the memory. As if it weren't embarassing enough for Max to have that talk with his Dad, he was double-teamed by Jeff Parker.
Now, granted there was something to worry about there. It sometimes took all of Max's willpower to keep from following his natural desire for Liz. And she wasn't known for her willpower around him ever since the orb had started their physical relationship with such a... bang.
Max smiled to think of that night at the Crashdown when he had every intention of only re-stating his desire to remain friends, but the sight and smell of her (not to mention the way she kept brushing by with those damn strawberries) had driven him to act on his desires right there in the kitchen. What would have happened if she hadn't had the vision that stopped her cold?
Max shook his head, but his mouth quirked to the side for a moment at the thought.
Then there was the "aren't-you-getting-a-little-too-serious" talk right before they started their senior year. Max didn't actually say much in return. Heıd read somewhere that it is always better to keep your mouth shut and have someone think youıre a fool than to open your mouth and prove it to them. Seemed like good advice to him.
Because everything he wanted to say about his feelings for Liz would just make it worse.
And besides that, he understood where Mr. Parker was coming from. It was a little scary to be on the outside looking in at a relationship like his and Liz's.
Before the time when his friends joined their minds with his to save Lizıs life, they had ragged him all the time about the two of them being so in love. But the amazing thing about joining minds is that you can finally see where the other person is coming from. They had all learned things about each other that night. Since then, his friends had all stopped harassing him about his feelings for Liz... because they had felt them, too.
Max wished that there was some way to let Mr. Parker know how he felt. That he would die to protect Liz, that she had touched something inside of him that no one else ever could, and that he couldn't imagine a time when he wouldn't need to be with her.
At least Mr. Parker was always willing to hear Max out and give him the benefit of the doubt, something Mrs. Parker was not so adept at doing. She tended to make snap judgments and hold grudges against Max if he did something she didn't approve of. And ever since he and Liz had been caught making out in the eraser room and spent that night out alone together in the desert, Mrs. Parker had found many things to disapprove of.
Which was why Max wanted to speak to Mr. Parker alone about this.
"This" was asking Liz to become Mrs. Max Evans.
Or Mrs. Liz Evans. Or Mrs. Liz Parker-Evans.
It didn't matter to him. Just so the whole world would know to stay away from his beautiful soul mate. She was his; and he was hers.
A quick smile forced him to run his finger across his lips in order to squelch it. This was a serious moment.
His future and Liz's future hinged on the next words out of Jeff Parker's mouth...
Finally, Mr. Parker turned and fixed steady eyes on Max.
"Max, I'm sorry but you're too young."
Max's heart sank.
Why did he have to pick the one thing I can't change?
Liz opened the door to the apartment and glanced at her parents on the couch as she shut the door behind her.
"Hi, guys," she said with a smile, stopping as she saw their faces.
Jeff Parker immediately stood to his feet and scratched at a sideburn, while Nancy remained sitting, smiling in a strained way.
Liz looked from one to the other.
They were so busy trying to *not* look strange.
"What's going on," she asked suspiciously.
Her father passed by her, mumbling something about the cafe.
He wasn't looking her in the eyes, but Liz could have sworn she saw tears there.
"Dad, what is it?"
He quickly exited the apartment and Liz turned back to her mother.
Nancy Parker had stood up, sliding one slightly shaking hand up into the loose hair at the back of her neck.
"Your father and I were just discussing... the bills. This is all a little more... costly than we'd like it to be. Nothing to worry about, dear," she said as she managed a gentle smile.
Her words were normal, but she stood staring at Liz for a moment before turning to leave the room.
Liz watched her go with a strange feeling in her stomach.
Something was about to happen...
A shiver ran over her and she shook her head in frustration.
When had she gotten so melodramatic?
It was simply ridiculous.
But the thought continued to nag her as she walked down the hall to her room.
She had felt like this once before... over two years ago.
The night before Tess came.
|Index | Part 2|
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