FanFic - Max/Liz
"The Hunter And The Hunted"
Part 1
by Sheeijan
Disclaimer: In an alternate universe I would own the show Roswell, the WB, and most importantly Jason Behr, but in this one I'm just another hardcore fan.
Summary: Nacedo is in Roswell, and that the hunted is about to become the hunter.
Category: Max/Liz
Rating: R
Authors Note: this is going to be really LONG. J If you don't like long, then don't read it. Power of choice. The power of choice also means that you don't have to read NC-17 material, so I'm working on a 'cleaner' version. If you're interested, email me.
{scene at Crashdown Cafe - it's Friday night, Liz and Maria are working}

"Liz! Earth to Liz, wake up Liz." Maria waved a hand in front of her best friend's face, trying to snap her out of the staring contest with Max Evans. "Okay, enough is enough, already."

"Sorry, Maria. What did you say?" Blushing slightly, she shot a final smile in Max's direction and followed Maria into the back. Business had been good, with the convention and all, and Liz had been busy all night long trying to keep the customers happy and sneak looks at Max. He had been sitting in the corner booth for a couple of hours, working on a paper for school. Now, it was nearly closing time and Liz was wondering if Max would stay and talk to her afterwards like he usually did. She could hardly wait. She sighed to herself. Her life had been reduced to an occasional café conversation.

"I said, enough is enough already. All those hormones rushing through your system can't be good for you, you know. I mean, they're obviously impairing your hearing and brain function, because you haven't heard a word I've said all night and you nearly screwed up two orders with the wackos from LA." Maria pulled out an incense bottle. "Here, this one will take you to a beautiful field of flowers. I haven't got one that puts you in a cold shower." Maria playfully wafted the bottle under Liz's nose, while Liz pushed her away.

"Sorry! I'm sorry I've been spaced lately! But it's not like you haven't been the same way when Michael's around. Come on, admit it. You deliberately get into fights with him. I can tell." Liz grabbed a towel and started back out the door. Just need to clean up and she could go home. "Where is Michael, anyway?"

"I have no idea. Said something about homework and took off earlier." Maria started in on the last table to clear away. Suddenly, the sheer absurdity of her statement caught up with her. "Homework??" She and Liz turned and stared at each other for a full minute, then turned and started for Max.

"What's up?" Max was startled at the urgent look in both girls' eyes.

"Max, is something going on? Maria, tell him what Michael said." Liz pushed Maria into the seat opposite Max while she perched on the edge of the table.

Maria immediately started in with the whole Michael/homework excuse. Max frowned, instantly worried. Michael was always the impulsive one, getting into trouble, leaping before looking. The word caution was only convenient for Michael when it came to Is and Max's actions, not Michael's. "Look, I'm going to go find Michael, okay? I'm sure it's nothing. I'll have him call you later." He jumped up from the table, stuffing his books and papers into his bookbag. Isabel was out on a date. He would have to look for him alone.

"No, Max, wait. I want to come with you." Liz grabbed his arm.

Max looked down at her face - so beautiful and caring. "No, don't worry about this, Liz. I'm sure Michael just needed some time off." Max knew that wasn't true, though, in his heart. Michael had wanted to go out to the desert where he thought the alien was camping out. Max and Isabel had wanted to try contacting him during the day, not sneak up on him at night. But Michael was just too impatient. The three of them had agreed to keep the girls out of this, deciding it was way too dangerous for them to know. "I'll see you later, Liz." He hurried out to the Jeep and took off.

Liz watched him go, then turned to Maria, who had gone back to cleaning up. "What are you doing?" Liz was startled, no, flabbergasted to see Maria acting so calmly. I mean, this was her best friend and she loved her, but Maria wasn't exactly up for any awards for "Coolest Under Pressure", although to give her credit she had been amazingly strong and supportive of the three aliens once she got over her fear.

"Well, what does it look like?" Maria was going through the place like a cleaning tornado, a virtual whirlwind of activity.

"Are you okay?" Liz grabbed the cleaning cloth again and cautiously edged around the whirling Maria.

"Yeah. Oh, yeah, I'm just fine. It's just my boyfriend, my sort-of boyfriend, is out there doing God knows what, breaking all sorts of laws I'm sure, with the Sheriff from hell and who knows what else after him, and once again, it's 'Maria, it's none of your business.' It's like a club - No Humans Allowed. Well, you know what? I am sick of it. When I'm through here, I'm going to go out and find that boy and I'm going to beat some sense into him and then I'm going home and watching any movie that doesn't have any aliens in it, and absolutely no guys, and eat about a pound of chocolate. Care to join me?" Maria rushed into the kitchen, then back out.

"Let's go." Liz grabbed her keys and followed Maria out the door.

Hours later, Liz was exhausted and angry. Exhausted because the two of them had been driving from one place to another, looking for Michael. There had not been a sign of him or even Max. Angry because… well, just because. Her life was never going to get back to normal, doing normal teenage things. Ever since Max had healed her, it was a rollercoaster ride every day, with no end in sight. Before the shooting, she had longed for excitement. Now she longed for a good night's sleep. "Maria, it's time to go home," Liz said softly. Maria looked like she was ready to burst into tears at the wrong word. Liz was surprised when, instead of arguing with her, Maria only nodded her head and turned the car back toward town. Maria still hadn't said a word for hours. Liz snuck another look at her. She seemed to be completely zoned out. "Maria? Are you okay? I mean, you're kind of scaring me, I've never seen you like this before." I've never seen you this quiet before, thought Liz.

"I'm just, you know, scared. And I'm sooooo furious at Michael. You know how I feel about him, and I know, well, I think he cares for me, but then he goes and does stuff like this. How stupid can an alien be? It's like that tabasco sauce ate into his brain. And, well, he still doesn't trust me or something. That hurts." Liz could hear the tears in her voice.

"Maria, you know how they feel about it. They're scared that the more we know, the more in danger we'll be - it's not that they don't trust us." Liz privately felt the same way as Maria, though. She couldn't seem to get Max to understand that the only thing holding them back was Max himself, and that she, Liz, was dedicated to the three of them.

"Well, that's just stupid!" Maria snapped back. She wiped her face with the back of her hand. "Look, I'm going home. Give me a call if you hear anything."

"Do you want some company? I had told my mom I might spend the night with you anyway, so..."

"No, I just... want to think for a while. I'll see you." Maria stopped in front of the Crashdown and gave Liz a watery smile. "You know, Isabel is going to be soooo pissed when she hears about Michael's latest escapade."

Liz smiled down at her friend reassuringly as she got out of the car. "I'll call you tomorrow." Liz watched her friend drive off, then turned to the Crashdown. She fished the keys out of her pocket, when she suddenly felt a shiver run down her spine. She whirled, heart racing, when she felt hands grab her around the waist and around her head. She felt his hand on her forehead, and then everything started to turn black.... ----------------------------------------------------- Slowly, Liz felt reality returning. Her head ached fiercely, pounding at her temples. Her breath started coming in hard gasps, as the fear started coursing through. She forced herself to concentrate on breathing normally. You have to get a hold of yourself, she thought.

"I know you're awake." Again, panic seared through her body. She sensed somebody very close to her, felt hands running over her hair. She opened her eyes.

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