FanFic - Max/Liz
"I Shall Believe"
Part 1
by Aquila
Disclaimer: I am the owner of nothing. All things Roswell belong Jason Katims et al. The song I Shall Believe belongs to Sheryl Crow and Franz Schubert wrote the Unfinished Symphony.
Summary: My version of what should have transpired after The Harvest.
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: This is my first attempt at fan fiction, actually any fiction since high school English way back when. I’m used to writing scientific papers, which may explain the big words. I just suddenly had a need to write this. It stared out simple, but the story took over and I have very little time to write so it’s taking much longer than I anticipated. I welcome all sorts of comments and criticism, especially constructive. If you’ve never heard Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony, I highly recommend it. It’s probably one of the best pieces of music ever written.
Max stared blankly at the dark expanse of highway stretched out in front of him, focusing on the yellow lines as they rhythmically disappeared beneath the jeep. They’d just barely made it out of Copper Summit with their lives and for the billionth time, he ran over the events of the last twenty-four hours in his head.

Isabel, Tess, Liz and himself had traveled to Copper Summit to check up on the deceased Congresswoman Whittaker, public servant and evil alien Skin. Despite the fact that Isabel had obliterated her in self-defense a few weeks ago, Whittaker’s hometown had planned an open casket funeral for the woman they claimed had been killed in a car accident. As it turned out, the entire town of Copper Summit was a headquarters for the Skins, the alien race bent on destroying the Royal Four: Max, Tess, Isabel and Michael and earlier today, they almost succeeded. Max shuddered as he remembered how he, Tess and Liz had been trapped in the funeral parlor after Isabel had disappeared. Where had Iz gone? He glanced in the rearview mirror and caught sight of his sister sleeping with her head on Liz’s lap. She had told him that Nicholas had lured her into the museum as a trap. He just couldn’t figure out why only her.

Yawning, Max returned his attention to the road. In order to protect Liz, Tess and himself, he had set up a force field between them and their enemies. He was still slightly weak from the drain of having to hold up the field for so long against such tremendous power. Tess had joined her power with his to help in the fight, but it wasn’t enough. Then, suddenly the Skins had relented, writhing in pain from an unseen force. When they ran for the jeep, they found Isabel, Michael, Maria and Courtney? running away from the museum. Courtney had destroyed their new husks, the outer layers the Skins needed to survive in the earth’s atmosphere. At the time, Max couldn’t figure out why the others were there, but he didn’t care. They had all come through for each other again. That’s how it was supposed to be. They were a unit and in Max’s mind that didn’t just mean the four aliens, but included their human friends. The aliens weren’t alone in this world. They had friends in Maria, Alex and Liz…

Liz. Just thinking about her sent a bolt of pain searing through his heart. He hadn’t been able to sleep since two nights ago; he had come to Liz’s window hoping to convince her that they really were meant to be, only to find her in bed with Kyle! He shuddered at the memory. Seeing her like that made him feel like he had been shot. He was numb, and then all the pain had come flooding forward. What had she done? Why was she with Kyle? When he had confronted her about it, she had said that she and Kyle had made love, end of story. She had to be lying. He was sure she still loved him and couldn’t imagine that she would betray him like that. She couldn’t have made love to Kyle, when she loved him. He had felt it when he had kissed her in Whittaker’s office. She had to be lying. She just had to be…

Max looked up into the rearview mirror. Liz was absently running her hand through Isabel’s hair, watching his sister with some concern. As if she sensed his stare, she looked up and their gazes locked. He trembled slightly as she held his gaze. Her eyes were tired and screamed of an unspoken pain. Max could feel her wanting to reach out to him, but suddenly she winced as though she had been physically hurt turned away, staring now out the window. In the moonlight, Max was sure he could see a rim of tears threatening to spill down her cheeks. What was she hiding from him?

Liz felt as though her heart had been ripped from her as Max held her gaze. Those bright eyes that she used to find comfort and warmth in were now dark and dead and the realization that it was because of her was just too much to bear. She tore herself away, feeling a sharp ache settle into her soul and stared out into the desert as it rushed by, hoping that Max wouldn’t notice her tears.

She stifled a sob and leaned back against the seat and closed her eyes. She was immediately met with the look on Max’s face when he had found her and Kyle together. She couldn’t get rid of the image. Every time she closed her eyes, she could see and feel his pain. It was her pain too. He had looked like part of him was dead and that was exactly how she felt. Part of her had died that night.

How could Max’s future self have thought splitting them up like this was a good idea? All that had come of it was grief. Liz wanted desperately to tell Max the truth that she didn’t sleep with Kyle, that he was the love of her life and that she was sorry for causing him so much pain. But he had to go to Tess. Without her, they were all lost. She sighed in resignation and tried unsuccessfully to fall asleep. The rhythmic hum of the jeep did nothing to soothe her pain.

Max sighed and turned his attention back to the highway. He wanted desperately to be angry with Liz, but all he felt was confusion and sorrow. She looked so defeated lying with her head back, sadness and fatigue etched on her face. No, he couldn’t be angry. He had to find out the truth.

Through half-closed eyelids, Tess watched the silent scene play out before her. Despite, her desire to fulfill her destiny with Max, it was heart wrenching to see him so stricken and defeated. She was becoming painfully aware that she would never take a place in Max’s heart. Even after such betrayal, Liz was all he would ever want. The realization left her feeling lost. All her life all she ever knew was that her husband, her mate was waiting for her somewhere. It was what had gotten her through all the lonely years growing up on the run with Nasedo. He was never much of a family and her only comfort was knowing that her real family was waiting for her, to love her.

But, the horrible ugly truth of it all was that her family didn’t love her at all. In fact, they almost resented her presence, especially Max, because in his eyes, she had destroyed the one thing he had wanted most. A normal life. She wanted to hate him for it, but she couldn’t. She kept wondering how she might have turned out growing up the way Max, Isabel and Michael had. She had never allowed herself to get attached to anyone and now she wasn’t sure if she knew how. She just knew she didn’t want to be the cause of any more grief.

Isabel slept fitfully in Liz’s lap. Her mind was consumed with visions of betrayal and the death of her family she couldn’t remember. Nicholas had said that she Isabel, Vilandra, was the betrayer, the one who gave up her brother his wife and his second in command to their deaths and ultimately brought about her own demise. Could this really be true? Could she really have been so heartless in her past life? How would the others ever trust her again if they found out? Over and over the nightmare of her friends and family deserting her when they found out her true nature played out its horrible scene in her head until the fear and pain numbed her into a restless sleep.


They pulled into Roswell around 1 o’clock in the morning and Max brought the jeep around to the back of the Crashdown. Liz gently roused Isabel so she could move from the backseat. Max couldn’t fight the reflex to help her.

“Are you O.K.? Do you need any help?” he asked, catching her gaze once again.

Liz stopped cold halfway out of the jeep. She couldn’t breathe when he looked at her like that. She knew he was only asking if she needed help with her gear, but the tone of his voice gave away his deeper feelings behind the gesture. “Um… no Max, I’m fine. I’ll see you at school.” The words sounded strange even to her own ears and she made her way as fast as she could to the back door of the café, not trusting herself to look back.

Once inside, she slumped against the door as she heard the jeep speed away around the corner. She strained her ears until she could no longer hear the familiar rumble, then she gave into her tears, letting them flow freely down her cheeks as her body was racked by sobs. How was she ever going to make it through this?


Once home, Max helped Isabel haul their stuff inside. He had wanted to talk to Iz about what had happened with Nicholas, but she closed herself in her room before he had a chance to broach the subject. Exhausted and dejected, Max changed quickly and flopped down on his bed. This time sleep, which had eluded him so far, came quickly.

Index | Part 2
Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
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