FanFic - Michael/Maria
"On Hollow Ground"
Part 14
by Ria
Disclaimer: I don't own Roswell or any of its characters I'm just having some fun with it all.
Summary: Some fishy things go down in the little town of Roswell and when problems arise the pod squad doesn't know who to trust. Takes place after Destiny minus all the couples breaking up.
Category: Michael/Maria
Rating: PG-13
Authors Note: I know it's been forever since Cruel Intentions and 3 Strikes and You're Out, but I finally made the time amongst my summer vacation and wrote my second real fan-fic so I hope everyone likes it.
"Come out where we can see you." Max took control of his speeding thoughts. He wasn't about to let the stranger take charge of the situation.

"Don't be afraid." Nesado's figure got closer and closer to the seven of them. "I'm not here to hurt you."

"Oh, that's right, you're all done killing people today. Your murdering schedule is pretty full so you want to take a break. We understand." Maria couldn't help but let her sarcasm out. It always helped calm her.

"Maria." Michael whispered pulling her closer to him. He wanted to be ready to defend her if anything went down.

"I haven't killed anyone." Mr. Harding's face came from the shadows and soon his entire boy was visible. "Don't trust Tess. Don't believe the lies she's been telling you."

"Who said we trusted either of you." Michael shot back threw gritted teeth.

"No." Nesado paused. "Something Tess told you about me was true. I have killed others before, but I am only responsible for one of the deaths she has blamed on me." The air in the stuffy room got caught in everyone's lungs. "I killed Hank. It wasn't right that he discovered what you and I are." He looked straight into Michael's not-flinching eyes. "He would have passed what he knew on to others, others who like him, shouldn't know." The room fell silent again, so quiet Maria could hear the blood pumping through her head.

"So you want us to believe that this mess is Tess's fault? She killed all those people?" Isabel wrapped Alex's sweatshirt over her goose-bumped shoulders.

Nesado nodded.

"Why didn't you try to stop her? You have the power to." Maria filled her lungs with a good breath of air and blew it out, steadying herself.

"It's not my place to stop her." Nesado's stood tall. Like he was a robot he forced himself to stand up straight as a pin. He was so alien to the seven of them.

"Why? You knew what she was doing. You could have at least tried to stop her. But you didn't." Isabel dug her long fingernails into Alex's thick sweatshirt.

"I can't stop her. She won't stop until she's dead." He looked at Max. "It's not up to me what happens to the four of you. I don't lead you. You control what happens in your own lives."

"You couldn't have warned us?! People are dead because of you! Even if you didn't do it, you did nothing to stop her so you are just as responsible as Tess is!" Liz stood next to Max furious thinking of all the casualties he and Tess had caused.

"I came as soon as I could. It wasn't safe for me or any of you." He looked pleadingly at them. "You're right, I do have the power. But like I said, it's not my place to kill her, to kill any of you." His eyes softened as he looked into Max, Michael and Isabel's eyes. "The three of you along with Tess are the only living creatures in the universe like each other. I would've been seen as an enemy who murdered the ones who were trying to save our home planet. I could've never returned home to our people." Everyone was speechless, everyone except for Liz.

"How are we supposed to believe you when your story is full of holes. You said that Tess is just like Max, Michael and Isabel, yet she can shape shift and they can't?" Liz avoided Max, who tried to grab her before she came closer to Nesado.

"You're right, Max, Michael, Isabel can't shape shift and neither can Tess. What gave you the idea she can?" He looked over her entire face. Her small nose and big, brown eyes, her long, flowing brown hair, everything.

"If all this crap that's happening is Tess's doing then how do you explain the man who beat me up yesterday, the man who came in Maria's room at the hospital, the man who attached Alex at the airport? According to you, Tess can't shape shift, so?"

"The same man who attached all of you, as you put it, is standing right in front of you." Liz felt her cheeks go pale and the last breath she had taken withering away. "You? It was you who did those things to us? But, you just said-" He cut her off.

"I didn't kill any of you did I?" He took a step away from Liz, back towards the darkness. With the small amount of emotions he held he could sense her urge to pull away.

"You're not making sense. You told us not to believe what Tess said, but every word that comes out of your mouth, only makes you look guilty." Alex said, his voice full of confusion.

"Please, understand you don't know everything. You just see bits and pieces that's all you know. It's not the way you see it." He watched Max take Liz's arm and pull her behind the unspoken 'boundary line'. "I know you care about her Max." He looked at the rest of them. "I know you all care about each other. What I did to Liz, Maria, and Alex wasn't meant as punishment and I didn't want to hurt them. I would never hurt any of you."

"But how can we trust you now? Explain to me what part of your brain, or whatever you have, makes you think we will believe you." Michael bit out.

"Do you want me to tell you what's really going on? Do you want to know the truth?"

"Yes, tell us, I want to hear. I want to know everything, the whole story and how this nightmare started. But I want the truth and if you're lying, so help me God, I'll-" He cut Maria off.

"If you want to know, so be it." He watched Max take Liz's hand in his. "I'll start from the beginning." With Liz's touch gently calming Max's nerves, he was ready for the hell that waited. "As you know, Tess never liked the idea of people knowing what you all are so when she began to question why and how I killed Hank I knew we were all headed down a dangerous path." Maria rapped an arm around Michael. She hated Hank for what he did to Michael, so much she was almost glad he was dead. "I warned her about killing people and how if she did it would only bring the attention of more people." He paused.

"Go ahead." Michael needed to hear the rest he had to know the truth.

"Tess then confided in me that she saw Liz, Maria, and Alex as potential problems in our future. That perhaps one day you would want to take them home with us when we leave. She was utterly disgusted with the idea. I tried to explain to her that you three would gradually let her in. But, not happy with my dismay she informed me that if you three weren't going to see what in her words, what is the best for you, she would make you see."

"Killing them was going to make us see what was best for us?" Max squeezed Liz's hand in his. He had almost lost her once and he would never let whoever was trying to hurt her succeed.

"She came to your house that night right after she had killed River Dog at the reservation. Hoping it would make you all closer, Tess blamed me for his death-" Isabel cut him off.

"It made it look like she was on our side. I actually believed she cared." She felt Alex's comforting arm on her shoulder.

"And you just let her use you like that?" Maria ran the tips of her fingers over the silver buckle of Michael's belt while her arms draped over his waist.

"Fearing for my own life and all of yours, I tried to play both sides. I didn't agree with her plan and I didn't want to see any of you hurt."

"So you did know all along what she was planning." Alex was listening close to every word he was saying.

"I didn't discover her entire plan until later, but when she demanded my help I decided to help you both. When she told me to kill Liz, instead of taking her life, I took her sight, something Liz was perfectly capable to do without for a short amount of time."

"You didn't want to hurt any of us? You beat me up." He felt Liz's angry eyes on him.

"On the contrary, it was you who beat me up. If I hadn't stopped you, you would've taken my head off with those shears." He cleared his throat. "When I didn't kill you, I expected Tess to be furious with me, but instead she liked the idea of torturing you. To her it was like a game of cat and mouse."

"Why didn't you just refuse to help her?" Maria wanted to believe him, in a way she pitied him, sad that he didn't have anyone to help him.

"For Tess, taking my life would've been no problem. It would have just left me dead and you all without the truth. I couldn't decline." He looked up at them. "Tess swore to me she'd be rid of Liz, Maria, and Alex." His eyes met Alex's sending a shiver up his spine. He was for sure telling a fraction of the truth. Those same eyes had belonged to his attacker.

"Why didn't you come to us? We would have helped you." Max looked at the strange man as his head hung, bringing his view to the floor.

"You would have really believed me after all those lies Tess told you about me?" He waited for someone to answer but no one did. "The simple truth is, I'm already dead."

"What are you talking about?" The fear could be heard loud and clear in Maria's voice.

"Me being here, telling you this, there's no way she'll let me live after what I've ruined for her." He took a deep breath and continued. "After she told you all her lies, she came to me very angry. She didn't like the fact that her trying to tear you apart had only brought you all closer together, but instead of giving up she informed me of her plans that would make her permanently rid of the three humans. As you know-" He looked at Maria. "-she left you a note telling you to meet her at Buckley Point where she had planned to kill you." Michael squeezed Maria's hands. How would he have lived without her?

"But I never met her. I didn't make it there." She felt Michael's hands tighten even harder on hers.

"A draw back for her but that still didn't stop her from getting what she wanted. Somehow she got her hands on a tractor-trailer and well, you know the rest."

"That's just what I don't get." Isabel let Alex's hand fall from her shoulder. "She could've killed Michael too. Why would she take that big of a risk?"

"To get what she wanted. She believed, if need be sacrifices would be made."

"Sacrifices? That's all we are to her." Isabel shook her head in disgust.

"She sees what you feel for each other as a sickness. That you've all been brain washed."

"Looks more to me that she's the one who's been brainwashed. What kind of a crazy bitch would steal a tractor-trailer and go on a killing spree?" Michael's anger was slightly calmed as Maria ran a soft hand over his back.

"As for her origin and power she is like you three, but her mind is different. She doesn't think the way you do." He paused, staring into the darkness. "After the accident she assumed you both were dead and went on with her plan."

"Where does my father's death fit in to all of this?" Kyle stepped up between Alex and Isabel looking Nesado in the eye.

"Immediately after she thought she had disposed of Maria and Michael she murdered your father in his office." He saw Kyle's eyes and the hate that filled them.

"And no one noticed something was going on?" Liz asked brushing her messy bed hair from her face.

"While Tess was killing Valenti, another officer walked in on her, but after a quick visit into the officer's mind she made him see it as if someone had a attacked Valenti and she had gotten in the way." He looked at Kyle strongly. "She would have killed you, had you not come here tonight." Nesado stopped again, but caught himself before too much time had passed. "Just by chance, the police took her to the hospital. There she discovered Michael and Maria were still alive. Extremely agitated by the news she implored I kill Maria."

"That's when Max and I came in and stopped you."

"Yes, but I had no plans to kill her. Again, I took something she could live without. I then left the hospital and laid low for a few hours. Somehow Tess knew where I was and again, ordered me to kill. But this time she wanted Alex dead."

"Wait, what about when you came to Michael's apartment and there being two of me? Where does that fit in?"

"I almost forgot about that." He looked at Maria, then up to the much taller Michael beside her. "Tess felt it necessary to at least try to turn you all against each other. So while she enjoyed your face, I went and took care of you and Liz. I knew she couldn't succeed with her scheme so I purposely had you ywo wake up just in time to ruin her plan to turn Michael against you."

"I thought you said they couldn't shape shift." Alex stood tall as Nesado paused, then came towards him, waving a hand over his face.

"She didn't. I changed her face." Alex looked back at everyone and was surprised to see them all jump.

"What?" He asked his voice still the same.

"Your face, it looks like…"

"Like Howard Stern's." Isabel finished for Maria who was clearly tongue-tied.

"Huh?" Flabbergasted, Alex touched his long, black, curly hair and looked at his reflection in the dark mirror. "Oh God, please give me my own face back." Without a word Nesado waved his other hand over Alex's face. He turned back to the mirror and was relieved to see his own face.

"Upset that things weren't going the way she wanted, she sent me to the airport to kill Alex. I took his speech and by the time I came back to Roswell I heard that Michael had been arrested."

"Then you helped me escape." Michael remembered how shaken Nesado had been.

"But before I helped you escape I gave Liz, Maria, and Alex their missing senses back. It was useless to keep them suffer."

"Michael told me you said Tess was watching us." Isabel massaged her shoulder with her free hand.

"I still am." They jumped at Tess's unexpected voice that came from the darkness.

"Where are you?" Max shined the lantern towards the darkness and slowly Tess's small frame could be made out as she stood, her head tilted towards the floor. "Is it true? What he's been telling us about you? Are you responsible for this mess?" There was an eternity of silence.

"Yes, I am responsible for this mess." She laughed, dropping her voice lower, mimicking his tone. "Hi Dad. Did ya' miss me?" She put an arm around Nesado. "Daddy, we had an agreement, a deal that you broke. Not good." She pressed her forehead against the side of his face but let go, seeing Max out of the corner of her eye. "I'm sure you all missed me." She looked the group of 7 in front of her over, stopping on Liz. "Rough night?" She looked her up and down.

"Whatever you want-" She cut Max off.

"I'm not ready to give my order yet waiter." She smiled as she reached for Maria, but before her hand had even made it half way she was caught off guard by the shove Michael slammed her way.

"Don't touch her." He took a step in front of Maria.

"Rude much?" Tess retaliated patting her curls back in place. She gave Kyle a sexy smile. "You remind me of your father."

"Why did you kill him?" He looked at her trying to keep his head.

"For the same reason I'm going to kill your little bozo friends and for the same reason I am going to kill you. You know what I am."

"Look, whatever you thought you were going to get here tonight-get over it. You don't own us. We can tell whoever we want about what we are. It's not just your secret."

"I know that Isabel." Her smile faded as she neared her. "But in these times of tribulation I feel that the three of you are not capable of keeping your new friends from talking."

"We won't ever say anything." Maria pleaded coming out from behind Michael.

"That's a joke." She snorted. "You're human. It's your nature to get jealous, and gossip. Sooner or later you would have spilled the beans."

"How can you say that? You're passing judgement on us and you don't even know us. We're not just like any other humans." Liz argued.

"Yeah, that would be like them meeting you and saying all aliens are crazy psychopathic killers who need be locked away in mental wards for the REST OF THEIR LIVES!" She ignored Michael, intrigued by Liz who no matter what always saw a compromise.

"You're just like every other person on this earth. All you care about is yourself." Tess poked Liz with her pointer finger. "Max saved your life that day at the Crash Down, but you just couldn't walk away. You had to know. You couldn't stand not knowing how it was that he took that bullet from your almost dead body. So you dragged it out of him, threatening to go to Valenti."

"I-" Isabel cut Liz off.

"And you're one to talk about people being jealous." Isabel stood forward, inches from Tess's face. "You did this whole thing because you couldn't stand the fact that we trusted them over you. You're just a coward who can't take social situations. We trust them because they earned it. We know they'll never rat on us because whenever we needed them they were there for us. They don't see us as 'sacrifices' or a ticket home, they care about us."

"Well doesn't that just make your stomach turn?" She backed away from Isabel her pleased look gone. "I think it's time for someone to die." Tess took a 38 from the back of her jeans and aimed it towards Nesado. "Since you have a major problem in this area, I figured I could teach you a few tricks of the trade." She cocked the gun and as she squeezed the trigger she felt hands on her back. Seconds later she hit the cold floor and jumped at the sound of the gun going off. "Ahhhhhhhhhh!! Oh my God!"

Part 13 | Index | Part 15
Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
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