FanFic - Max/Liz
"The Road Not Taken"
Part 4
by MJ1071
Disclaimer: Don't own them, but sure wish I did!
Summary: Takes place after Destiny - Liz walks away from Max - or does she?
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: This is a timeline/alternate reality type of story which will be totally incomprehensible without reading the first 3 parts, so if you haven't done that - stop now! (Just kidding )
~ The Present ~

Alex heard what could only be described as someone bashing on his front door and sighed. He didn't have to look to know it was Maria. When she'd called his cell earlier this evening, he'd taken a punt and ignored it, hoping whatever it was she wanted to tell him could wait until the morning. Obviously not. Shaking his head, he threw the sheet music he'd been working with on the floor and went to answer the door.

"I'm coming already!" he muttered to himself as Maria continued to bash on the door. Alex glanced at his watch. Yeah, his neighbours were gonna love him.

"I swear Maria, this had better be important." Alex told her as he yanked open the door. Then he looked at her. She looked like she'd seen a ghost. No it was more than that, Maria looked utterly devastated. Pulling her inside, he shut the door and guided her to the lounge room.

"Maria, I'm sorry, God what is it, what's wrong.I haven't seen you like this since." Realising what he'd been about to say, Alex stopped abruptly. Maria burst into tears.

"Since can say it Alex." Maria managed to choke out through her tears.

Alex groaned and pulled her into a hug.

"I'm.Maria.I didn't mean.please don't cry. I'm a totally moron - just ignore me ok?"

He felt Maria pull away from him and was surprised to see a watery smile on her face.

"No Alex it's ok - I'm sorry - I didn't mean to come over here and lose it." Giving his hand a final squeeze, Alex watched as she walked into the kitchen. Returning to the lounge room with a few dozen Kleenex, she wiped her eyes, blew her nose and finally looked up at him. He could see the pain in her eyes.

"This is just so typical! I was going to come here and tell you everything. I was going to be calm and rational. But no, I have to go and completely lose it when anyone even almost mentions his name. Damn it Liz!"

"Wait - you talked to Liz? Did you guys have a fight or something - is that what this is about?" Alex was lost.

"You haven't talked to her yet?" Maria asked.

Something in her tone warned Alex this wasn't about some fight. And why was normally verbose Maria just staring at him with those haunted eyes? He was starting to get a really bad feeling about this.


Dale silently let herself into the apartment. 20 seconds later, she was in her room. Her legs felt unsteady as she walked over to her bed. Her heart was pounding. Getting under the covers fully dressed, she rocked herself gently and tried to let the warmth of her doona stop the shaking. Pierce's voice and his instructions swirled in her head.

It was almost daybreak before the shaking stopped.

~ The Past ~

The minute Max left the Crashdown, Liz dashed through the Café to the back, up the stairs, through the lounge and into her room, slamming the door behind her. A satisfied smile spread across her face as she tried to catch her breath - she'd done it!


At the sound of his voice, Liz whirled round. Max was standing in the middle of her room. She couldn't believe he'd gotten to her room first! Then Liz could help giggling as she took in the expression on his face. He looked so pleased with himself - maybe even a bit too pleased!

"That's not fair - you used your powers!" Liz managed to get out between giggles.

"Oh so you're calling me a cheat are you?" He asked playfully. A wicked look came into Max's eyes as he moved towards her.

"I think you should just admit you were beaten!"

"Not going to happen buddy!" Liz teased back, right before Max grabbed her and started tickling. Liz screamed and retaliated blindly. An all out tickle fight ensued.

It wasn't long before they collapsed in a heap on her bedroom floor, both of them laughing so hard they could barely draw a breath. Liz's heart swelled as she looked up into Max's smiling eyes. The haunted look she'd noticed over the past few weeks was gone. He looked as relaxed and happy as Liz had ever seen him. They continued to lay on the floor but as their laughter subsided Liz became aware of how close their bodies were. Her legs were curled around his; their faces were only inches apart.

Max was coming to the same realisation. Standing abruptly, he pulled her up and into his arms. His smile slipped away and his expression turned intense as he continued to hold Liz's gaze. She could always do this to him. 10 seconds ago he thought he was going to die laughing and now all he could think about was how right it felt to have her in his arms.

Liz felt that familiar flutter of anticipation as Max took her face in his hands. Her eyes drifted closed as his gaze dropped to her lips and he moved in towards her. The connection between them started the second their lips met. It seemed to swirl inside them and Liz gasped as she was caught in the surreal sensation of experiencing her own, as well as Max's feelings and desires.

What started out as a gentle probing of each other's mouth - touching, tasting, teasing; quickly built up momentum until they were both out of control. When they finally broke apart Max rested his forehead on hers. They smiled, as they each watched the other try and regain some sort of composure.

"You win." Liz whispered, once she was capable of speech.

Reaching out he gently caressed her face. "You're right I do." Max whispered back.

Liz was mesmerised as she watched his eyes start to smoulder again. She felt herself being drawn in by his intense look. Through their connection she could feel his love for her, his passion, his desire. Liz felt like she was jumping out of her skin. She needed to be with him, totally, completely.

"Max, I want you to stay with me tonight." She told him, her voice like liquid silk.

Max sucked in at her words, his head swimming as he realised her meaning. Max knew nothing had ever felt so completely right. God.his Liz! Just the thought of being with her was straining at his control. He wanted to be with her so badly, his whole body was aching with need.

"Are you sure.?" He asked huskily

He looked deeply into her eyes. Max saw no doubt, only desire, trust, and . overwhelming love. Then Max realised the need he felt wasn't just his own. His eyes darkened as he reached up and pulled her towards him.

"More sure than I've ever been in my life." Liz replied before claiming his lips in a open mouthed kiss.

~ The Past ~
His face was outwardly calm, but inside the irritation was building steadily. After the hours of travelling, now being forced to wait was straining his habitual self-control.

He'd gotten the call on Pierce's cell yesterday. Refusing to divulge anything over the phone, Tess had insisted he make his way to the pod cave as soon as possible. He'd considered not complying. There was to be absolutely no further communication between them - definitely not in person. The mission was on track and he was NOT going to have it unravel because she couldn't handle some problem. His fear won out in the end. He needed to know what was so important for her to break cover. So urgent she expected him to drop everything and return to New Mexico.

Getting back to New Mexico was easier said than done. That was partly because he wasn't fully convinced his substitution had gone unnoticed. He was fairly certain no one in Pierce's personal life had noticed the change. Actually, as far as he could tell, the man had no life to speak of outside work, so it wasn't hard to cover his tracks in that respect. Years of practice meant he had it down to a fine art now anyway. But the Bureau.well now, that was a whole other story.

So far he hadn't come up against anything concrete to back up his concerns - something just didn't feel right. He thought maybe it was a reaction on his part. A reaction to the fact he'd been waiting for the opportunity for upwards of 50 years. And really, things had gone so smoothly, just as they' d planned. But he couldn't shake that niggling worry in the back of his mind. Feeling the way he did, going back to Roswell was the last thing he wanted to do.

Further complicating his travel arrangement was the fact he obviously couldn 't go back looking like Pierce. Pierce's travel claim stated he was bound for Los Angeles, which was as close to New Mexico he felt Pierce could go without raising suspicion. An internal audit would find all the appropriate paper work - flights, car rental, hotel bill, cab fares, expense allowance. The reality was somewhat different.

After arriving at Dulles late last night, he found a bathroom and shifted into the most nondescript human he could picture. The flight from Washington to Santa Fe was uneventful, but just to be doubly certain, before he picked up the rental car, he found another mens room. An average sized man wearing cowboy boots and hat emerged and ambled over to the Hertz desk. The Texan twang was unmistakable as tipping his hat, he accepted the keys and thanked the woman behind the counter.

So after another uneventful journey, this time by car, here he was - waiting. Every passing minute was increasing his irritation. Another 10 minutes passed before he heard the rustle of someone making their way through the scrub outside. 15 minutes later, Tess was standing in front of him. Neither one spoke for several minutes. He felt his irritation grow rapidly into anger as she made no effort to speak. Finally he could stand the silence no longer.

"I thought you understood that you were not to contact me again - ever."

The singsong quality of his assumed accent sounded incongruous with the tone in his voice, which was hard, mean, barely restrained. When she continued silent, he felt the restraint within him snap.

"I won't have this operation compromised because some foolish."

"He has chosen the earth girl." She calmly informed him.

He was stunned and for a second could only stare at her. Then his mind took off, dozens of scenarios overlapping at once, threatening to completely overwhelm him.

"I've not spent the last 50 years on this planet, wandering like a vagrant, just to allow the mission to be jeopardised by a teenage crush." he spat at her, trying desperately to hide the wild panic her words invoked in him. If they were together then.

"No one could have done more. This was always a possibility - especially considering their upbringing." Tess stated looking him directly in the eye.

Always a possibility? Their upbringing? Was she trying to blame him for her failure in the undertaking? It certainly seemed so. But before he could follow the thought further, Tess closed the distance between them until she was standing only inches away from him. Her tone was deceptively pleasant.

"Look - we can stand here laying blame all afternoon, but that isn't going to get us anywhere. The fact of the matter is Max has chosen her. It won't be long before they discover everything. We have to act now. Personally, I think things couldn't have turned out better."

"Better?" He couldn't believe what he was hearing.

"We've been going about things the wrong way. I've always thought so. The situation has finally motivated The Council to act in a rational manner.and I think you'll enjoy the updated plan."

He could hear the satisfaction in her voice - she sounded like she might actually purr.

"And what might that be?" he asked, fearing he already knew the answer.

"We kill The Three."

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