|"Going Home (parts 1 and 2)"|
Disclaimer: Roswell, the characters, and situations are owned by the WB. No infringement intended.|
Part 1: Liz|
He's gone. I can't believe he's gone. I don't know what I'm going to do. I can't remember what my life was like before him. I think my heart blocked it out a long time ago. I wish it was as good at blocking out the pain I'm feeling now.
I look up to the moonless night sky. There is a bright flash of green and a streak across the stars. It lasts for just a second, then fades away into nothingness. The fanatics are going to have a field day tomorrow. Will someone out there in the midst of all those twinkling lights come to know the joy of him as I once did? I'm glad you found what you were looking for. I hope they appreciate you.
I knew this day would come. No, wait, that's not true. I never believed it in my heart. Not really. If I had, I wouldn't have let myself feel this way about him. I was supposed to be prepared, but I'm not. You can't prepare yourself for losing the love of your life. I suppose I'll always have a part of him with me, but that idea seems so trite and doesn't really make me feel any better here and now.
It would have been easier for both of us if he didn't love me too. I know he wanted to stay, but I love him too much to make him choose. Maybe I could have made him choose me if I'd tried, or at least I could have made the choice more difficult than it already was. But how could I stand between him and the answers he's been searching for all of his life? He already knows what is here for him. He needs to see what is out there now. Just because I understand it doesn't mean it doesn't hurt.
There's a sound down on the street. I feel an anxious pang, though I've given up hope of ever seeing him again. I wonder how long it will be before I stop expecting to see him at every turn. I try and ignore it, drawing my eyes back to the pages of my journal. Then I hear it. Someone is definitely calling my name.
It can't be. I must be imagining it. It comes again, more insistent this time.
Hesitantly, I arise from my chair and go to the edge of the roof. I close my eyes at first, then open them again slowly. Ever so gradually he comes into focus, standing there on the sidewalk, his hands in his pockets, smiling the sweetest smile I've ever seen. I don't have to ask. I feel a tear escape and trace the outline of my cheek. Everything's going to be fine.
Part 2: Max
It's the most amazing thing I've ever seen. The immense ship stands before us, an imposing figure of black, shiny metal. Like most people on this planet I've never seen an actual UFO before. That is, except for the one that brought us here, and I don't have any memory of that one. A long gangway ramp is lowered from some unseen portal within, inviting us to board.
Michael goes first, barely able to contain himself. He's like a kid meeting Santa Claus for the first time. Of all of us, he was the most prepared for this moment. Isabel is next, a bit more apprehensive, but still plainly excited. She always was the adventurous one. Then it's my turn. I slowly approach the gangway, feeling more uncertain with each step. Just as I reach the top, an image pops into my mind. All I can see is her face as we said goodbye. Suddenly it becomes clear. I hope they'll forgive me for what I'm about to do.
"I'm sorry. I can't."
With these four words I've changed the course of my destiny forever. I'm as surprised as anyone to hear them coming from me. Isabel and Michael spend minutes trying to convince me before they finally realize I'm not going to change my mind. I wish we could have parted on better terms. I'm really going to miss them. At least they have each other, and all of the answers to our questions at last. They'll be fine. Maybe someday they'll even understand.
As I walk the long road from the desert launch site to her door, I wonder what she must be thinking. Is she sad? Hurt? Angry? I wouldn't blame her if she felt any of those things. I brought her into all of this. I can pretend that I told her the truth because I had to, but really it was completely selfish of me. I just wanted to share my secret with her, to be closer to her. I didn't think about how it would affect us both until it was too late. It kills me to think that I could have caused her any pain, but I'm going to fix it. I'm going to make it all up to her.
She tried to be so brave, but I know her too well. I could almost feel her heart breaking when I told her about the ship. Or was it mine? I must admit I was a little disappointed that she didn't try harder to convince me to stay. I guess she knew how important it was to me. That's the kind of person she is.
If she only knew how much I cared for her. My choice was made for me the first time I saw her. I've loved her from that day and I know now that I always will. And the most amazing thing is, she loves me too. A life without her wouldn't be any kind of life at all. My place, my home, is with her. I am more sure than ever that this is the right path for me.
Finally, I reach her building and look up. If I know her, and I do, she'll be up on the roof, writing in her journal. I call out to her, but there is no answer. Maybe she didn't hear me. I try again. This time she appears at the edge of the roof. I can't help but smile. Her face is like a beacon of light to me. She wears an indescribable expression of joy and disbelief. She cries a solitary tear, which drips down and lands on my own cheek. I know she understands the sacrifice I've made for her.
Walking away from that ship was just about the hardest thing I've ever done, but even that wasn't as hard as telling her goodbye.
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