Disclaimer: I don't own "Roswell", that title goes to Melinda Metz and the
WB. The kids are my characters, though ;)
Authors Note: Dedication: To the Dreamgirls....this summer is making me craxy....here's to hoping this next season will be filled with lots of Dreamy moments ;)
| "Lauren! I'm home!" Sheriff Kyle Valenti called throughout the small
ranch-style home he shared with his teenaged daughter. "Lauren?" He asked
again, puzzled. The only sound permeating through the house was the echo of
his own voice. He walked into the kitchen where he found a note written on a
alien-shaped notepad resting on the kitchen table. He picked it up and raised
his eyebrow as he read over the note's contents. |
"Dad, I've gone with Adam-Michael Evans to his cousin, Zachary Whitman's birthday party. I hope that's OK. I shouldn't be home too late. There's some leftover pizza in the fridge. I love you, Lauren."
"Evans." Kyle muttered, shaking his head. He couldn't recall Max and Liz's son ever being mentioned by his daughter, and now he was taking her to a family party? Something was definitely off. Lauren was with the Evans, the Whitmans, and the Guerins-- the inseparable clan of outsiders that he was never able to figure out. They were upstanding citizens of the community, so he had no reason to believe they were up to no good. But if his daughter was involved with them now, then he would make it his business to find out what was going on.
"Valenti, get a hold of yourself." He said, chuckling under his breath. "High school is over." He couldn't believe that after all these years, he still questioned Max Evans. First he lost Liz's loyalty-then his father's-to the brooding, over-sensitive quiet loner that he had tried so hard to understand. He wasn't about to lose his only child to him too. He placed his father's favorite cowboy hat on top of his head and grabbed his car keys. He was going to pay his old friends a little visit.
* * * * *
"She's so beautiful." Isabel whispered to Maria as Adam-Michael and Lauren arrived at the Whitmans' home, bearing gifts for the birthday boy. Maria nodded, smiling.
"She got more than a few genes from her mother. I was always jealous of Vicky Delaney." Maria said as she and Isabel munched on carrot sticks around the table.
"Maria, we were babes in high school too..." Isabel said, smiling.
"Were? Hell's bells, Izzy, we still are!" Maria said, chuckling.
Adam-Michael was making the rounds through the sea of family members, trying to introduce Lauren to each one. Lauren leaned up on her tiptoes and cupped her hand around Adam's ear. He thought he would have a coronary right then and there.
"I really hope I remember all these names..." She whispered lightly.
"Hey, they're my flesh and blood and I still don't remember half of them..." Adam-Michael joked. Lauren smiled at him. "...But I do want you to meet my baby brothers. They are so awesome." He walked down the hallway of the Whitman home as Lauren followed closely behind.
"I just love babies." Lauren said, smiling. Adam-Michael slowly opened the door to Ryan's room and found the twins asleep in the playpen. Lauren put her hands to her mouth to keep from "awwing" too loud and waking them. "They're adorable!" She whispered almost inaudiably.
Adam-Michael kneeled down over the playpen and lightly touched the baby blue cuff on Matthew's outfit. "This is Matty." He then lightly brushed his finger over the light green back of Dylan's outfit. "...and this is Dylan." He whispered. Lauren smiled.
"Adam, they are precious." She said as they quietly left the room, shutting the door silently behind them. Adam-Michael just nodded and smiled. Lauren Michelle Valenti was standing before him, worshiping his kid brothers, mingling with his family... he didn't quite understand how or why this was happening. But he sure as hell didn't mind. They walked back into the kitchen where Isabel was putting six candles on Zachary's birthday cake.
"Oh, remember," Lauren said, pointing to the cake. "Seven...one to grow on, right?" Isabel smiled at her.
"Good suggestion. I can't believe I forgot that! Thanks, Lauren." Isabel said, pulling another candle out of the small box and adding it to the top of the cake. Alex smiled at her as he walked past Lauren and Adam-Michael to pull some matches out of the cabinet on top of the refridgerator. Adam-Michael fixed drinks for he and Lauren and they walked into the living room to talk to his parents. Max and Liz sat on one couch, Max with his arm around Liz, and Liz looking into his eyes lovingly.
"Are your parents always this sickingly cute?" Lauren whispered into his ear. Adam-Michael blushed and laughed. He was getting used to this Lauren-blowing-hot-breath-in-his-ear-thing...definitely. Lauren and Adam sat down on the opposite couch, facing his parents.
Liz smiled. "Lauren, it is so nice to finally meet you!"
"It's nice to meet you too, Mrs. Evans."
"You have your father's beautiful eyes..." Liz said, smiling.
"Thank you, Mrs. Evans." Lauren said, smiling and taking a sip of her Sprite.
Max smiled at her too. "And you have your Grandfather's smile."
Lauren raised her eyebrow. "You knew my Grandfather well? Adam-Michael never told me that."
Max sighed, pulling Liz closer to him. "Your Grandfather was a wonderful man. He saved us quite a few times." Adam smiled, knowing exactly what his father was talking about. Sheriff Jim Valenti, Lauren's grandfather, had found out about his father's secret and had saved him from being killed by a special unit in the FBI when he was only sixteen years old.
"I miss him a lot. He...passed away...just a couple of years ago." Lauren said, looking away to keep from crying.
"Yes, we know. We went to the funeral, sweetie." Liz said with a solemn look on her face. Lauren just quietly nodded and Adam-Michael looked over at her, wanting so desperately to reach out and touch her, tell her that everything was going to be ok....that he was here for her, that he was always here for her...
"Well, Lauren, how does your Dad like his job?" Max said, trying to change the subject.
Lauren smiled. "He loves it. I mean he's wanted to be the Sheriff all his life. He's really good at it. He cares about the people of our town so much. I'm very proud of him."
"As well you should be." Max said, smiling.
"So how do you two know each other?" Liz asked, motioning to Adam-Michael and Lauren.
"Bio lab." They said in unison. Giggles between them followed. Liz looked up at Max and smiled.
"That's funny, we were bio lab partners too..." Liz began, thinking back to high school.
"More like I did the work and she wrote everything down..." Max teased her. She playfully smacked his arm.
"Hey, buddy, I did more than my fair share of work! I pulled us out of more than a few jams if I do recall." Liz said. Max rolled his eyes and smiled.
"Sure, Lizzie, whatever you want to believe." Max said, winking at his son and Lauren. The younger twosome smiled at their general playfulness.
Jordana walked past the couches, arching an eyebrow at the blonde beauty who had so easily won her brother's affections. It was enough to make her barf.
"Jordibelle, come sit with us." Liz said, patting the seat next to her for her daughter to sit down. Jordana shrugged her shoulders and sat down on the couch with her parents.
"What are you guys talking about?" Jordana asked, snuggling into her mother's shoulder and yawning.
"Oh, nothing." Adam-Michael said.
"Bio lab." Lauren said.
"Cutting open frogs and seeing their insides. Yummy, huh?" Adam said, clapping his hands together and rubbing them quickly, with a wicked smile on his lips. Jordana went sheet white.
"Eeew! You actually had to DO that?" Jordana asked, wrinkling her nose.
"That's exactly what I said when I had to do it, Jordana!" Lauren said, smiling. Jordana paused as the older people around her continued to talk. She rolled her eyes while the new girl wasn't looking and soon felt a warm tingling heat flow through her brain. She looked up from her Mom's shoulder to see her older brother was looking at her with daggers in his eyes.
"Don't start." Adam-Michael mouthed to his sister calmly. Jordana kept his gaze for a moment and then returned her head to Liz's shoulder. Lauren didn't even notice this exchange between the otherworldly siblings as she and Max continued to discuss their mutual dislike of dissections.
Liz smiled as she watched Adam-Michael look at Lauren with such longing and love in his eyes. She reminded him so much of Max at that moment. She knew that they would soon have to tell Max about Adam-Michael's premonitions. She was dreading that moment.
It would devastate him.
* * * * *
"What *do* you plan on doing exactly? You can't just waltz in their house and not have a plan." Nasedo said to Tess as they creeped through the bushes surrounding the Evans' front porch.
"I don't know... I thought maybe I'd sit on the porch for a while, breathe in the crisp, cool air...isn't it a beautiful night, Nasedo?" Tess said, claiming a spot in a rocking chair and closing her piercing blue eyes, taking in the clear star-filled night.
Nasedo rolled his eyes. "My name is Jessica, OK? You never know when they will come home, you need to be careful of what you say. We have to get in there and get out! You can't screw around...there's no time, Tessa..." The twosome slowly climbed onto the front porch. It was a little harder for Tess, considering she was still in the body of a pregnant woman.
"Look, I can handle this, OK? We'll go inside, plant the necessary information, and leave." Tess said calmly as Nasedo put his hand over the doorknob. They heard the lock slide open and they knew the door was open. Tess couldn't help but feel a pain stabbing in her heart. This was the house Max and Adam-Michael shared with Liz. The perfect Liz Parker. The girl who got in the way of her destiny...her only reason for living.
The woman who stole her child.
"Tess! Focus!" Nasedo said, motioning to a bag he had slung over his shoulder. "Here... here are the things you wanted me to bring..." Tess wasn't listening. She walked slowly through the kitchen, gliding one finger over the counter and letting it rest finally on a nearby table.
"I bet this is where they eat breakfast every morning. Do you think she's a good cook, Nasedo?" Tess asked, her gaze drifting to a nearby wall. "I bet Max likes her cooking. I bet my Adam and the little mutt children love her cooking, too... I bet they have fun here, I bet they have nice long talks here... she, my love, my son..."
Nasedo realized Tess was in a completely different place, not listening to a word coming out of his mouth. He sighed. "Tess, you can't do this. Don't dwell on what's happening now. Focus on the future."
"My future, right." Tess said, snapping herself back into reality. A stray piece of auburn hair slid down her face from the loose ponytail on top of her head.
"Soon you will be in your own body again and you will have what belongs to you...and there will be nothing to stop us."
Tess looked into his eyes and tried to hold back the tears forming in her deep blue spheres. She wanted to sigh, to speak, anything...but the tears threatened to fall and she couldn't show signs of weakness. She wouldn't let Liz Parker win again. "Let's do what we came here to do and be gone. This place is giving me the creeps."
Nasedo reached out and touched Tess's shoulder lightly. She drew herself back from him quickly and folded her arms in front of her chest. "Just give me the pictures." She said, reaching out her hand.
Nasedo nodded, placing three pictures in Tess's shaking palm. They were small pictures of Tess with a four-year-old Adam-Michael smiling at her side. She tried not to look at them too long, but suddenly felt the routine stinging starting from the pit of her stomach, working its way up into her heart. She swore she could feel the child inside this unfamiliar body start to move inside her. Nasedo noticed Tess's distress at looking at the pictures and tried to take them out of her hand.
"No." Tess said firmly, wiping her nose with the back of her hand. "I'm doing this. You take the ones to put in the... other... children's rooms, I'll go into Max and Adam's rooms."
Nasedo looked at her for a moment, questioning Tess's desire to hurt herself even more by taking a tour of Max and Liz's bedroom. He didn't have time to stop her. She was already inside the master bedroom of the house, her heart stilling at the sight.
Tess moved slowly but surely through the room, sitting down onto the unmade bed. She laid back and for a moment, could imagine Max lying warm beside her. She pulled one of the pillows off the bed and clutched it to her face. She breathed deeply, inhaling the scent that was purely Max Evans. She turned her attention to the set of pictures lying on the nightstand next to the side of the bed. Her eyes began watering at the sight of Max, Liz, a five-year-old Adam-Michael, and a newborn Jordana at Max and Liz's wedding. They had renewed their vows in a small ceremony in the New Mexico desert. Tess recognized the background cliff formation. They had gotten married near the pod chamber.
Tess threw the picture against the wall, making a loud crashing sound and causing pieces of splintered glass to fly all around the room. "You BITCH!" She screamed, knocking the rest of the pictures off the nightstand, causing each one to fly to the ground in an explosion of broken glass.
Nasedo ran into the room from down the hall, arms waving in the air in anger. "Tessa! What are you doing? Are you crazy? We can't make them too suspicious!"
"This should be MY house! OUR children! This whole family, this whole marriage is a sham! A lie! Max is mine! He always was mine!" Tess said, falling back onto the bed and burying her contorted face in the sheets.
"I know that, Tess. I've risked my life to help bring Max to you...I won't let you screw this up!" Nasedo screamed, yanking her off the bed by grabbing her auburn ponytail. Tess screamed in pain. "Get up! Put the pictures where they need to be and we'll leave!" Tess continued to cry as Nasedo left the room. She kissed each picture before placing one in Max's top drawer, one in the drawer of Liz's nightstand, and one on the mirror, wedged between a baby picture of Jordana and a picture of an eight-year-old Adam-Michael posing with a soccer ball.
"When I'm finished with you Elizabeth Parker, you'll wish you never met Max Evans." Tess said coldly, summoning her powers and punching her fist at the mirror, causing the entire mirror to crack and shatter. The hatred she felt for Liz poured out of her fist and caused the glass to melt into liquid all over the dresser. "It's almost over." She repeated to herself, doing some deep breathing exercises as she walked out of the now-trashed room, shutting the door behind her and going to find Nasedo.
* * * * *
"Well, well, well...if it isn't my favorite man of the law, Kyle Valenti." Maria said, opening the door to the Whitmans' house with a smile. Kyle smiled back at her, removing his hat and motioning to the inside of the house.
"Hello, Maria. Long time, no see." Kyle said.
"I could say the same for you, too, Sheriff. Would you like to come in?" Maria asked, opening the door a little wider to allow Kyle entrance into the house. "Your daughter is working that Valenti charm on my nephew over there..." She said, pointing to the living room where Adam-Michael, Lauren, Max and Liz were still engrossed in conversation. Kyle raised his eyebrow at this scenario but pressed forward.
Kyle smiled at the mention of Lauren. "She is wonderful, isn't she?" He asked, motioning to her. Isabel and Alex made their way into the kitchen to greet Kyle.
"Well, Kyle Valenti, it's so nice to see you!" Isabel said, wrapping her arms around him and giving him a friendly welcoming hug. Alex extended his hand for a handshake.
"Sheriff Valenti, it's been ages." Alex said, smiling politely.
"Yeah, I know, Whitman...it's been crazy down in the department lately...we've had some unexplained homicides, a couple of armed robberies, some cases of grand theft auto..." Kyle said as his daughter breezed into the kitchen with a grin. She playfully poked her dad in the ribs.
"Is my Dad boring you with the Roswell crime report again?" Lauren asked, smiling. "I told him not to do that at parties."
Kyle smiled half-heartedly at his daughter who seemed to fit in so well with this elusive family. He hated to admit it, but it scared him. He couldn't figure out why, until his reason walked slowly into the kitchen.
"Hello, Sheriff Valenti. It's been a long time." Max said, flashing a half smile and extending his hand towards Kyle's with Liz and Adam-Michael by his side.
Kyle hesitated and looked around at the circle of his high school classmates. He finally returned Max's handshake and unconsciously pulled his daughter closer to him.
"Why, yes, Evans. Yes it has."
|Part 5 | Index | Part 7|
|Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours|