FanFic - Max/Liz
"Small Sacrifices"
Part 1
by Karen
Disclaimer: Borrowed and returned undamaged, thanks.
Summary: A joyous event turns tragic; Liz sets Max free.
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: Feedback is always appreciated. Thanks!
Liz Parker opened her eyes to the sound of her alarm ringing softly by her bedside. She smiled as she reached for the clock and hit the snooze button. Under her blankets, she stretched her petite frame, arms outstretched, toes pointed in perfect ballerina style. Like all mornings, thoughts of Max Evans flooded her mind as she slowly emerged from the haze of her slumber. Max. Perfect, beautiful Max. And he was hers.

Liz rolled over onto her side and wiped her hair out of her face. Just last night Max had taken her out to dinner, then they just walked for what seemed like miles. He held her hand and talked about irrelevant things, things that seemed more important to Liz since Max was saying them. Then they had returned to her home where they had proceeded to her bedroom. Max was always gentle with her, always tender and careful. The amount of affection he showed her always astounded her. He treated her like a China doll, so fragile, so delicate. With Max, Liz felt like a princess.

Liz smiled wider, then her eyes snapped open. She felt a tightening in her throat, a queasiness in her stomach. She was on her feet and running for the bathroom before she was fully awake. She made it just in time. After she was sick, she sat back on the edge of the bathtub and looked at her shaking hands. Where had that come from? She'd felt fine after dinner last night, but she still supposed she could have eaten something bad.

The sickness didn't dissipate. It came over her in waves. She'd be fine, then she'd be scrambling for the bathroom again. She fought off another bought in the shower and somehow managed to get ready for school.

Liz found Max waiting by her locker. Her heart always started to thump double time in her chest when she saw him. His smile was infectious - when they'd been going through the initial angst over being together, Max had never smiled, but now he smiled all the time and Liz had to smile in return. She remembered his warm embrace from only a few hours ago and happily stepped into his waiting arms.

"Good morning, sunshine," he said against her hair. His big hands caressed her back and she felt at ease.

"Good morning, sweetheart," she said against his chest. He was always so warm; he was like a 6-foot tall heating pad and the warmth made her sleepy. She hadn't noticed how tired she'd felt until now.

Max pulled away from her and kissed her. Then concerned creased his brow as he looked into her eyes. "You okay?"

Liz nodded. "Yeah, fine. I think I ate something bad last night."

Max kissed her forehead. "Shell fish. Will you never learn?" He laughed a light laugh.

Liz laughed with him. She loved the stuff - and it usually made her sick. "I guess not. Listen, I've gotta go. I need some last-minute prep time before that math test."

"Okay." Max's incredible eyes creased with another smile as he watched her walk away from him.


Another wave of nausea hit. Luckily it was between classes and Liz could scoot into the bathroom relatively unnoticed. After she vomited, she shakily left the stall and stood before the sink. Wondering if she should seek some kind of medical attention, she splashed her face with cold water. This wasn't normal.

Maria Deluca appeared beside her. Maria's face was pale as she popped open a pillbox.

"Hey, Maria," Liz said as she blotted her face with a paper towel.

"Hey, Liz." Maria swore loudly as she fumbled with the pillbox.

"You okay?" Liz asked.

"Cramps," Maria groaned as she popped a couple of pills into her mouth. "Wicked ones." Maria eyed her friend as she swallowed. "You have cramps, too? You look awful."

Liz shook her head. "No, no cramps for me."

Then it hit her. She and Maria always ran a week apart. Liz had her period first, then Maria. It had been that way since they had both started. Like clockwork. Which meant that Liz should have had hers last week. She was late. Liz felt her world start to spin. It all made sense - the vomiting, the tiredness, the tenderness in her breasts when Max had touched her last night. She was pregnant.

"Well, I guess you got lucky," Maria was saying. "I never catch a break like that."

Liz nodded weakly, then retreated to the stall so she could throw up again.


Ringing her hands, Liz paced her room. What was she going to do? Her father was going to kill her - worse yet, her father was going to kill Max. She could see it now - gentle Mr. Parker would turn shotgun- toting killer hunting down Max Evans. And all the FBI agents and alien hunters in the world couldn't hold a candle to an enraged father.

Liz glanced over at the brown paper bag on her bed. Praying no one she knew had seen her, she'd bought a home pregnancy test on her way home from school. Just get it over with, she told herself. Just do it. Hey, maybe it will be negative. She smiled weakly. Yeah, maybe all of the symptoms where coincidental and she was just off schedule for some reason. There was only one way to find out.

Liz grabbed the kit and raced to the bathroom before she could develop any kind of second thoughts. Ten minutes later, she was sitting on her bathroom floor crying. Ten minutes after that, she was calling the only person she knew she could confide in. _____________________________________________________________________

Arms crossed, Maria leaned against Liz's dresser and studied her friend. Liz was pale. She looked sick. Her dark eyebrows were arched upward in a perpetual expression of disbelief and worry.

"What am I going to do, Maria?" Liz's voice was small.

"Tell Max," Maria said simply.

Liz shook her head violently. "No! I can't tell him!"

Maria shrugged. "Why not? He's the dad, isn't he?"

Liz's shoulders sagged. "Of course he is."

"Don't you think he should be going through this with you?"

Liz rose from the bed and started pacing again. "I'm not sure there's anything to go through."

Maria frowned. "I thought you said the rabbit died."

"It did," Liz confirmed. "But it was just a home pregnancy test and I didn't have much money so I bought the cheap kind…" Her face brightened as she stopped pacing and regarded her friend. "Maybe it's a false reading!"

"Maybe," Maria agreed. "Wouldn't explain the puking, though, would it?"

Liz's shoulders sagged again. She plopped down on the end of the bed and hung her head. "What am I going to do?" she repeated.

Maria sat down beside her and put an arm around her shoulders. "Let's go to the doctor."

Liz shook her head again. "I can't. I'm under age. I have" - her voice dropped to a whisper - "I may have an alien's baby growing inside of me."

Against her will, Maria laughed.

Liz withdrew. "This isn't funny, Maria."

Maria covered her mouth with her free hand. "I'm sorry. It was just the way you said it. It was like it was going to pop out of your belly like in the movie "Alien" when that…" Her voice drifted off and she looked at her friend. "God, you don't think that's how it happens, do you?"

Liz sighed. "I don't know. I hope not. That would be pretty hard to explain to Mom and Dad. As if being pregnant weren't enough by itself."

Maria blew out a sigh also. She squeezed Liz's small shoulders reassuringly. "The Free Clinic."

"Maria, no. That place is for-"

"Knocked up teenagers?"

Liz felt her stomach drop. That's what she was. She was a knocked up teenager. Perfect, straight A, honor student Liz Parker had slipped up in a major way. She nodded her head. "Yeah. When do we go?"


Maria leafed through a magazine in the waiting room while Liz chewed her nails. It was something new for her - nervous habits had never been a part of Liz's life. Now she had chewed her nails down to the skin. Maria looked calm, relaxed. Why shouldn't she? She wasn't the one with non-human DNA growing in her body.

Liz glanced over at a young girl seated with her mother by the wall. The girl looked to be no more than 14 or 15, and her belly was huge. Liz tried not to stare. Then she realized that she probably looked just as young as that girl. People were looking at her and thinking the same thing. Of course, no one could tell that Liz was pregnant yet. Maybe they would think it was Maria. No, Maria was the calm one for a change. The one biting her nails was the one in trouble.

"Elizabeth Evans," the nurse called from behind the desk.

Liz didn't respond. Maria elbowed her. Liz jumped to her feet and met the nurse at the door. The nurse smiled at her and led her back toward the examining room. She gestured toward the scale.

"Hop up there for me, would you, honey?" the nurse asked.

Liz stepped onto the scale and smiled at the nurse. The nurse had immediately put her at ease somehow. Liz glanced at the weights on the scale - 105 pounds. She'd dropped 10 pounds in the last week. The nurse led her to a room and handed her a gown.

"Go ahead and get undressed. The doctor will be in in a few minutes." The nurse gave her a reassuring pat on the arm and closed the door behind her.

Liz stripped and pulled the gown over her body. The cool air in the room made her shiver. She hopped up onto the examining table and waited. She glanced around at the equipment in the room, wondering which would be used on her.

Liz looked up as the door swung open and a man in his thirties stepped in. He had a chart in his hand and was busy writing something on it. He stopped when he was a few feet in front of Liz and extended his hand.

"Elizabeth, I'm Dr. Stephens."

Liz took his hand. "You can call me Liz."

He smiled gently at her as he sat on the stool. "Okay, Liz. How old are you, Liz?"

"Eighteen." She hoped she didn't hesitate when she said that.

He glanced at the chart. "And you think you may be pregnant?"

Liz nodded, looked at the floor in embarrassment.

"Why do you think that?"

"Um, I bought a home pregnancy test. It was positive."

More scribbling on the chart. "Symptoms?"

"I'm sick to my stomach a lot."

He nodded and scribbled. "Anything else?"

"I'm tired a lot of the time."

"Um Hmm. Breasts tender?"

Liz nodded.

The doctor stood. "I'd like to do a routine examination, if that's okay with you?"

Liz felt the nervous need to bite her fingernails, but nodded instead. "Okay."

The doctor performed the examination and confirmed Liz's worst fears. She was pregnant. Tears rolled silently down her cheeks as she lay on the examining table. Dr. Stephens stood so that he could look into her young face. He took one of her hands to comfort her and noted her chewed nails.

"I'm not sure how far along you are," he told her as he stroked her hand. "May I do a quick ultra sound? I should be able to see the size of the fetus, and that will give me a rough estimate."

Liz nodded and accepted a tissue when he handed it to her. As he was preparing the equipment, she had a sudden jolt of terror - what if the fetus didn't look normal? She glanced quickly at the blank monitor. What if it showed up with that big alien head and those big, blank eyes? Liz felt her heart start to quicken in her chest. Maybe she shouldn't let him do this…

But the doctor was already at her side, squirting an oddly warm jelly onto her abdomen. "It doesn't hurt," he was saying. "It'll be a little warm, then a little cold." He turned the monitor so he could see it, which positioned it out of Liz's view. She started to get a little more panicked. But she saw his face break into a smile - not an expression of horror - when he located the baby. He picked up a chart and glanced back at the monitor.

"About six weeks," he announced.

Liz swallowed hard. Her curiosity was getting the best of her. "You can see it?"

The doctor looked at her. "Sure. Do you want to see?"

Liz's gaze snapped to his. "Can I?"

The doctor smiled and tilted the monitor toward her. At first all she saw was gray fuzz. Then, a wiggling, moving figure - something that looked like a skull, and something that was perpetually moving. The doctor pointed to the head. "That's his head."

"His?" Liz looked at him again.

He smiled gently. "Sorry - its head. It's too soon to tell what the sex is."

Liz looked disappointed. "What is that thing that is moving?"

The doctor pointed to the spot with his pen. "That? That's the heart."

Liz was astounded. "Really? Already? His heart is beating already?"

He nodded. "At this stage you can see all four chambers." He pointed each of them out to her. "It looks like a healthy baby so far, Liz."

Liz felt herself getting more and more excited about the new life inside of her. "Can I hear the heartbeat?"

Dr. Stephens shook his head. "Too soon for that, too." He put down his pen and chart and went to stand by his patient. He noticed that her gaze hadn't broken from the black and white video image.

Liz watched the baby on the monitor. If she looked close, she could make out its delicate spinal column, its tiny arms and legs. There was a life - a life that was part her, part Max Evans - growing inside of her. A healthy baby, the doctor had said. A baby whose heart had already started to pump life though its tiny veins. Her mouth dropped open in complete awe.


Liz looked up at the doctor.

He picked up one of her small hands in his and turned it over so she could see her own nails. "I know this has been troubling you," he said. "I want you to know that there are alternatives."

Alternatives? Adoption? No, no one else was going to raise hers and Max's child. Abortion? Out of the question.

She smiled at the doctor. "Not for me." Her voice cracked as the tears started to flow down her cheeks. "I'm happy about this," she sobbed. "I really am."

Maria was startled when Liz came through the door and hugged her hard.

"You're not pregnant?" Maria guessed.

"No," Liz said against her shoulder. "I am pregnant, Maria, and it is the most wonderful thing in the world!"

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