Disclaimer: I do not own the storyline of Roswell or it's characters.
Neither do I own the lyrics to "Stranded" by Plumb. I'm just having fun with
Summary: When Max learns the truth about what happened between Kyle and Liz, he decides to reunite with Liz and take their relationship to the next level.
|Liz closed her eyes and laid her head against the seat, drinking in the
feeling of the desert air brushing past her face. Maria sat in the driver's
seat, swaying her head back and forth as she sang along with the radio. A
smile crossed Liz's face. They were listening to more of that angsty
fem-rock that Maria loved so much. Her voice was soft, harmonizing with the
lilting melody..."You know it only breaks my heart to see you standing in
the dark. Waiting there for me to come back. I'm too afraid too show...I
want to be with you, if you want to be with me. I'm crashing like a tidal
wave. I don't want to be stranded..." |
"You have a beautiful voice, Maria," Liz said.
"Thanks, girlfriend! I love this song," Maria replied, smiling. "You need to sing with me."
"OK, fine," Maria shrugged. "But I'm gonna have to take the solo, then."
Liz smiled and turned back to the window in time to see the "Roswell City Limit" sign fly by.
"It just feels so good to get out of town, even if it's just for a few hours," Liz said. "Sometimes I feel like I can't breathe in Roswell."
"Mmm hmm," Maria replied absentmindedly. She was enjoying this drive, careening over the winding desert road, not a car in sight. The song almost brought out the beauty of the night sky. She sang along with the radio..."I miss you...I need you...without you, I'm stranded...I love you..." Looking over, Maria noticed that a tear had slipped down Liz's cheek. Liz brushed it away quickly. Maria saw an outlet up ahead and began to slow the Jetta down. "We need to talk," she told Liz, turning the car off of the road.
Maria found a flat patch of ground about twenty feet off the main highway, and parked the car. Liz got out and closed her door, walking forward and leaning against the hood. Maria walked up behind her and rested against the bumper. Liz sniffed and tilted her head back,looking up at the stars. There was something very comforting about being here, surrounded by nothing but the desert and the inky blackness of the sky.
"I love it out here," Liz said. "Everything is so simple. When it's just you and the stars...it's perfect, you know? It makes sense."
Maria cleared her throat. "Liz, are you going to tell me what's wrong, or do I have to guess?"
Liz slowly leaned her head on Maria's shoulder and began to cry. Maria put her arm around Liz, brushing her hair back from her face. "Liz, what is it?
Liz allowed herself to cry for another moment, and then straightened, wiping her eyes. "I don't know what's going on with me," she said.
"What do you mean?" Maria asked.
"It's like, I know that I can't be with Max, that we were never meant to be together," Liz said, taking a breath. "But there's a part of me that is still holding onto him so tightly. It's like I can't let him go."
"What's happened? Did he say something to you?"
"No. That would imply that he's still speaking to me," Liz said, wringing her hands nervously. "Every time I see him, it's like he's reliving the thing with Kyle all over again. The whole scenario just keeps spinning around and around in his mind."
"Oh God, Liz," Maria said.
"It's not even what he says, it's the way he looks at me," Liz said, "like he's finally seeing me for who I really am. I just...I don't think I can do this anymore."
Liz took a step away from Maria, pacing in front of the Jetta. Maria merely watched her, concerned for her best friend.
"For weeks, Maria, I've had this secret pressing on me, without having the right to share it with anyone,least of all Max. I've had to convince him that I betrayed his trust again and again, all the while knowing that what I'm really doing is providing a way for him and Tess to be together," Liz continued, breaking down at the thought of it. "You have to help me, Maria. I...I don't know how to be without him."
Maria linked arms with Liz, patting her hand. "OK, OK...we just need to think of something," she said. Both girls were silent for a moment, their breath visible in the crisp evening air. Finally, Liz shook her head slowly. She felt so foolish for trying to deny the inevitable.
"What am I doing? I don't belong with Max, and I can't stop what's coming. I don't have any right to," Liz said, frustrated with herself. "How could I be so stupid?"
"Liz, nothing that you're feeling is stupid," Maria replied.
"Yeah, but I should be able to handle it, you know? I mean, I've known for a really long time the way that it has to be with Max. I've just been refusing to accept it."
"I don't know what to tell you,Liz," Maria responded."I'm sorry."
"Maria, it's not your fault,"Liz said, rubbing her friends arm. "It's no one's fault." There was a moment's pause, and Liz heard Maria sigh loudly.
"What?" Liz asked.
"It's just, this whole thing is so bizarre," Maria replied. "I mean, even when you take the whole alien factor out of it. How can Max and Tess be destined for each other when Max is so obviously in love with you? If they really were predestined for each other, don't you think that they would sense it, that they would be completely drawn to each other?"
"Well, Tess seems to be drawn to Max," Liz remarked.
"I don't know," Maria returned. "That still doesn't explain why Max has been in love with you since we were kids. It also doesn't explain why you love him in return."
"It's just a cruel twist if fate, I guess," Liz said.
"No," Maria replied quickly. "I don't know why, but I don't believe that. I think you and Max are meant to be together. Max, Michael, Isabel...I think there's a reason why they're here, why they crash-landed in Roswell. We just have to figure out what it is."
Liz observed Maria, a doubtful look in her eyes.
"Maybe we should visit my mother's psychic again," she finished, nodding confidently.
"What? She was right about everything else," Maria said, undeterred. Liz put her arms around Maria and hugged her tightly.
"Thank you," Liz said.
"Wait a second," Maria hesitated. "Are you OK?"
"I still feel awful," Liz sighed,"but better than before."
"Come on," Maria replied, putting her arm around Liz. "Let's go home."
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Max was sitting at his computer when he heard a knock at his door.
"Come in," he called. The door opened, and Isabel stuck her head in.
"Hey," she said, eyeing him carefully. She was trying to gage his mood.
"I heard a rumor at school," Isabel began. "It involves a certain person that we both know."
"Liz and Kyle," Max said matter-of-factly, wanting to get past the incident once and for all.
"You heard it,too?" she asked.
"I saw it with my own eyes," Max replied.
"What?" Isabel said, startled. "It can't be true. It doesn't make any sense."
"It doesn't make sense, but that doesn't mean it's not true," Max said.
"But Kyle? Why would Liz dog you for someone like...Kyle?" Isabel asked. The possibility was completely beyond her comprehension. "He's just so...ewww."
"Thank you, Isabel," Max said tiredly. "I hadn't quite thought of it like that."
Isabel bit her lip and truly observed her brother for the first time. He looked like a hadn't slept in weeks. Why had she not noticed before?
"How are you handling it?" she asked quietly. "Are you OK?
"Yeah, I'm great," he replied. "Just wonderful."
"If there's something going on with you, Max, you need to tell us about it," Isabel said a bit defensively. "We're not mind readers, you know."
"Like you and Michael would care," Max said, turning towards her. "You guys are so preoccupied with our mission. All you worry about is if I'm being a good leader or not. No one ever stops to see how I'm doing. No one even cares."
Isabel watched Max, surprised by his attitude. Max looked at her.
"We haven't talked in weeks, Isabel," he continued. "This thing with Liz and Kyle happened a long time ago. You and Michael always assume that everything's OK, that I have everything figured out. Well, I don't. I am flying by the seat of my pants here, and I don't know what's gonna happen next. These past few weeks, I've needed to talk to you. Instead, I had to confide in Tess. I barely even know her, Isabel."
"I'm sorry, Max," Isabel said. "I should have realized that something was wrong. I guess I've been a little self-absorbed lately."
Max stood up from his chair and came around to the bed. He sat down next to Isabel. "It's just, it's important that we have the ability to talk to one another. We need to depend on each other, and be there for each other." Max thought for a moment, then sighed pensively.
"We are all alone in this world, Isabel," Max said. "If we don't help each other, who else will help us?"
"Not a dark-haired girl that we both know, apparently," Isabel replied softly. Max looked away. He did not want to talk about her.
"Max, what happened?" Isabel asked.
"I don't know," he responded, exhausted. "But it happened, and it's over. I've spent enough time thinking about it. I'm not going to dwell on it anymore."
"But, it just does not make sense," Isabel repeated, a confused look transforming her features. "We all know Liz, Max. I don't think she is capable of doing that to you. It would go against everything that she stands for, everything that the two of you share."
"Well, love dies," Max replied bitterly. "We've always known that we could never fit in here, that we would never have the priveledge of fully living a human life. We're not like them, Isabel. It doesn't matter how much I wanted things to be different...things are the way they are. The sooner we realize that life doesn't always turn out the way we want it to, the better off we'll be."
"I know, Max," Isabel said. "I know." She put her hand on Max's shoulder, stood, and moved towards the door. Pausing in the doorway, Isabel turned around. Max looked up at his sister.
"For what it's worth, Max, I know that she loved you," Isabel finished, meeting her brother's gaze. Max hesitated for a moment, then stared at the ground.
"But not enough, Isabel," he said quietly. "Not enough."
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