|"Epiphanies 2: The Anasazi Road"|
Disclaimer: I would be the happiest woman on Earth if I owned any of these people, but sadly, only Josh, the Holbrooks, and Paul Hernandez are mine.|
Summary: This is the sequel to EPIPHANIES 1: The Ties That Bind. It picks up the evening of the Evans barbeque that ended the first story. Here, Max and Liz must come to terms with a shocking revelation about Liz and her Grandma Claudia. They search the past among Native American ruins and history to find the truth and each other.
Authors Note: I have done extensive research on the Anasazi for this fic. Most of what you will read is either factual or widely accepted speculation. I have, on occasion, filled in a gap or made an assumption that suits my purposes. The alien connection, of course, is my own Roswell-loving imagination.
|Liz dragged her camping gear awkwardly through the back door and shut it behind her. She could hear the buzz of customers out front in the restaurant and didn't want to get sucked into working tonight. She was tired and had too much to think about. She stowed her sleeping bag in the storage room and began climbing the stairs with her duffle bag. With the radar of a practiced parent, Jeff Parker appeared at the top of the stairs. |
"Here, let me help you with that." He ran down the steps and took the heavy bag from Liz.
"Liz, I need to talk to you about something, if you have some time." Liz noticed that her father looked faintly nervous, so she shrugged off her tiredness.
"Sure. What's up?"
Mr. Parker set the bag down in the hallway and turned toward Liz. "Let's sit down, honey."
"What's wrong, Dad?"
"Nothing, really, but . . . . Do you ever remember meeting Greg Austin? Your grandmother's lawyer? He stopped by our table once when we were out to dinner with your grandmother over in Chaco Canyon a couple of years back."
"Vaguely," Liz replied, wondering what this had to do with her and why it made her father nervous.
"Well, he called today. Evidently, there was a codicil to your grandmother's will that somehow was not dealt with at the reading of the will. He really doesn't even remember drawing it up for her, so he's quite embarrassed, but a law clerk in his firm found it sealed in her file and brought it to Greg's attention. We're going to have to go to Chaco Canyon again."
"We?" asked Liz. "I wouldn't mind the trip, but why do I have to go?"
"That's the strange part about it, Liz. You are mentioned in that codicil." He paused, and Liz could tell something else was coming. "And so is Max."
"Max! Grandma didn't even know Max!" Liz was stunned. There were too many odd things going on that had to do with her grandmother.
"That's what I thought." Mr. Parker fidgeted for a moment and then looked hard at Liz. "I know you are very big on privacy, Liz, but I think it's time you told me everything you know about Max."
Max's phone rang. "Hello?"
"Max, it's Liz, " Liz whispered into her receiver. "Something really strange is going on."
"If you're talking about your grandmother's will, that lawyer called my dad today. Why would I be in her will? She didn't even know me."
"Remember what she told us, Max? She said she knew about you before I did. She also said to follow the signs she would leave for us. This has got to be one of those signs. But Max, now my dad wants to know all about you. He's acting really weird. Almost nervous."
"What did you tell him?"
"Just the usual stuff, Max, but it obviously didn't satisfy him. Something is really bugging him."
"Liz, we're supposed to meet with this guy on Monday. As minors, we need an adult with us. My dad's tied up in court, so either I have to go with you, or my mom has to come."
"My dad's talking about taking us over there. Not even my mom is going."
"Everyone here is pretty keyed up. I don't think there is any way for me to get out of here tonight. I'm sorry."
"Yeah, I know. Here, too. But we'll meet at the library tomorrow, right? About 2:00?"
"Okay. And Liz?"
"I love you. I wish we could be together tonight."
"Me, too. It'll be hard to sleep without you." There was a long silence. Neither had anything more to say but they didn't want to hang up either.
"Max!" yelled Mr. Evans. "Come in here a minute."
"Gotta go, Liz"
"Okay, bye. Love you."
The connection was broken, and Max felt an emptiness inside. Damn being 17 and having so little control over your life!
An hour and three phone calls later, the Evanses and Parkers had agreed that Jeff Parker would take Liz and Max to Chaco Canyon on Monday, leaving in the wee hours in order to arrive in time for their 2:00 p.m. meeting. They would meet with the lawyer, camp in the Chaco Canyon National Park for the night, and do some exploring the next day. They'd return on Wednesday.
Instead of being angry about Max missing work, Milton was enthused. "Chaco Canyon is a great place to visit, Max," he beamed. "There are lots of Anasazi relics there, and you know, there are several mysteries surrounding that tribe. Many people believe it has to do with alien visitation. You should look into that before you go."
Max was stunned. Another Anasazi reference--and an alien connection? This was all getting too weird. "Well, actually, I was thinking of doing some reading at the library."
"Excellent! Have a great time. Come tell me what you thought about it when you get back."
Max left and went to meet Liz at the library. She was sitting on the front steps when he pulled up. She jumped up and ran to greet him. Before a word could be spoken, she had her arms around his neck and pulled him into her embrace.
"I missed you last night," she said softly. "I didn't sleep well at all."
"Neither did I," said Max, resting his forehead against hers. "There are so many questions in my mind. I needed you there. You make me feel at peace."
She smiled up at him and lifted her lips to his, drawing him into a tender kiss. "At least we get to take a trip together!"
"Yeah. You, me, and your dad. Very romantic."
"At least we'll be together," she chided him. They linked hands and walked into the library.
The reference librarian was pleased to see two young people so motivated about their research. She gladly found books and maps for them, offering suggestions for the best sources. They read voraciously. Sitting on opposite sides of a reading table, they sorted through descriptions of Anasazi life, pictures of the Cliff Palace at Mesa Verde in Colorado and of the ruins at Chaco Canyon, and maps of the villages. As Liz leafed through a book about their rituals and mythology, she gasped. Max looked up and was chilled by her frozen stare. He rose and walked around the table, unnerved by the look on Liz's face. As he approached her, his eyes dropped to the page in front of her.
There was the spiral symbol from the cave, from Isabel's necklace, and, evidently, from an Anasazi rock painting.
|Part 4 | Index | Part 6|
|Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours|