FanFic - Other
"72 Hours"
Part 1
by Brad Fondak
Disclaimer: I don’t own any of these characters, settings, etc… They are all property of Warner Brothers, Pocket Books, etc… ©1998, 1999, 2000 and so on. I am just renting them for the purpose of the below story.
Summary: Max receives a letter that brings the group’s future and their lives in doubt.
Category: Other
Rating: PG
Authors Note: This is part five of six of my story cycle, collectively titled “A Roswell Summer”. 1. Aftermath
2. The Beacon
3. Chronicle Foretold
4. True
5. 72 Hours
6. Visitors (forthcoming) You can find them all on the other Roswell stories page if you’d like to catch up. Once again, constructive criticism, comments, email me at


A week passed. Nothing out of the ordinary happened, which was kind of strange considering what had gone on that night. Isabel didn’t hear any more voices; there was still no sign of Nasedo, the special unit, Javier, or anyone else that was in the least bit suspicious. Even Tess was making an effort just to blend and not try to force things. It was just unnatural.

Liz and Maria were working the early shift at the Crashdown. They hadn’t even been on the same shift all week, and with Liz and Max being together 24-7 and Maria spending time with her mother and at Michael’s, they had barely spoken. After breakfast and before the lunch rush, they had a few minutes on break.

MARIA: So…long time no see…where have you been?

LIZ: Come on Maria, it hasn’t been that long…

MARIA: I’ve called you like every day…you haven’t even picked up the phone.

LIZ: Well…I haven’t been home all that much.

MARIA: Yeah…but you do have a cell…come on…I know that you and Max are busy, but you could at least find a minute to give me a call…any longer and I would have sent out a search party.

LIZ: Maria…

MARIA: What if we hadn’t been here today…what would you be doing?

A quick smile passed over Liz’s face. A few seconds later, the front door to the Crashdown opened and Max walked in. Liz walked away from Maria and practically ran toward him.

MARIA: I think that answers that question. Liz Parker, the perfect man, the perfect life. Why can’t I be you?

Max and Liz shared a brief kiss, and Maria walked back into the storeroom.

MAX: Liz…I only have a minute. Do you have that platter that the Center needs for the investors coming in this afternoon?

LIZ: Oh…yeah…it’s right here. So what are we doing tonight?

MAX: Well…I don’t know. Milton wants me to stick around, talk to these guys. Says they need to get the full flavor.

LIZ: Uhh…yeah…something like that.

They both shared a knowing glance at that one.

LIZ: Well…stop by when you leave. I should be here…maybe we can go to the park, take a walk or something.

MAX: Sure…I’ll talk to you later.

After a short pause, Max left and Liz went back to the stockroom to find Maria. She found her putting away their latest shipment of beef patties and rolls, guaranteed to add grease to any Roswellian’s diet.

MARIA: Is he gone?

LIZ: Yeah…he was only stopping by to pick up the platter.

MARIA: Oh. So, after work, do you want to go get a movie, have a girls’ night? We need to catch up…

LIZ: Catch up? It’s not like we each moved to different states, Maria. It hasn’t been that long…

MARIA: Well…

LIZ: …and I already told Max we’d do something tonight.

MARIA: Of course…well…go have fun, live the life…and when you’re all rich and successful, don’t forget the little people who you saw on the way…

LIZ: Maria…you know it’s not like that. Come on.

MARIA: I know…I’m just giving you a hard time. Living vicariously through you is what’s keeping me going these days anyway. You and Max deserve each other, no matter what. It’s silly to mess with something that important. I wouldn’t be a friend if I didn’t know that.

LIZ: So how’s Michael?

MARIA: Michael’s fine.

Liz shot Maria a look that told her that answer just wasn’t going to be good enough.

MARIA: I mean, he’s fine. What, do you want a blow by blow?

LIZ: You haven’t mentioned him at all today. That must be a good sign.

MARIA: Well…we’ve been together a lot, just not…

LIZ: as together as you’d like to be…

MARIA: Yeah…

LIZ: You know Michael…it takes him a long time to come back around, but he will…you know that too.

MARIA: I know…but at least this time is giving me an opportunity to get to know more about him…I mean without all of the kissing and stuff, you know, just friends.

LIZ: What is that Maria, a silver lining…?

MARIA: Come on, I’m reaching here…

The two walked back into the main dining area, the stockroom stocked.

LIZ: So…I’m taking a raincheck on that movie night…right?

TESS: Movie night?

Tess was sitting in one of the booths near the window. At this time of the day, she was the only person in the café.

LIZ: Tess! I didn’t even hear you come in.

TESS: That’s OK…I was still mulling over the menu anyway.

MARIA: Menu? It’s not like you don’t know what this place serves.

TESS: Yeah, well. So what movie night?

LIZ: No…Maria wanted to get together and watch a movie, but I have plans tonight.

TESS: Well…Maria, if you want to come over to my place, we can do pizza and a movie on my big screen.

MARIA: Well…

Liz shot Maria a quick glance. Maria knew exactly what that meant. Tess was going to be part of the crew now. Since Liz had gotten back with Max, her and Tess hadn’t spoken to each other, but she felt a lot safer around her, like she was unmasked or something. It would do some good for them to do some bonding.

MARIA: Sure…but how about tomorrow? I told my mother that I would help her pack up some boxes for her to ship tonight.

TESS: That works for me. Liz, you free for tomorrow?

LIZ: Uhh…OK…how about we meet here at about 6, go to the video store, and get some food. I work till then.

MARIA: Sure…Liz…we need to get out some napkins for the front here. Come back and help me carry them.

LIZ: Uhh…sure Maria. Tess, do you want a drink?

TESS: How about a Diet Coke?

LIZ: OK. I’ll be back in a minute.

Maria and Liz darted back to the stockroom.

MARIA: What are you doing?

LIZ: No, what are you doing? I thought you were free tonight.

MARIA: I wasn’t going there without you. We need to get to know her better anyway. She’s going to be around.

LIZ: Yeah, I know. But Max…

MARIA: Liz…you and Max…don’t have a thing to worry about. Tess came into town, did everything in her power to sway Max away from you, and he has spent that past month and a half trying to ignore her and find ways to get you back…even with the fate of his planet on her side. Come on…

LIZ: That’s not what I meant. I just don’t think that Max would be comfortable with this.

MARIA: Max won’t be there. It could even be fun. Besides, it’s not like you haven’t been there before.

LIZ: It was just as creepy that time too. No wait, creepier.

MARIA: At least now you know what to expect. Underneath that creepy exterior, she might be OK. I mean, look at Isabel. She really, shall we say, unnerved me at first. We don’t really know the real Tess.

LIZ: What if the real Tess is the same person we know now?

MARIA: Don’t worry about it. It will be fine.

As Liz went back out to the front to get Tess her soda, the place started to fill up. The two of them went back to work.


The next day, Max was at work until late. The meetings with these investors and Milton were going pretty well. Max set himself up to reign in Milton whenever he started on his flights of alien induced fancy. He didn’t want them to get scared off. Milton had told him in as many words that cash was the only thing that was going to save the place. Admission charges weren’t keeping the building air conditioned, or paid for for that matter. They needed to expand, make Roswell a real destination. Max wasn’t exactly sure if he wanted that. He didn’t need more people coming to town, especially people that would latch onto any wild story. He had already seen that when the story turned to being about him, it hit far too close to home. But, he liked Milton, liked his job, and didn’t want to see either of them go away. Anyway he could help then was good. The irony of working at the Center rarely escaped him, but working to bring more alien seekers to Roswell while trying to hide from other alien seekers himself was a unique situation.

He finally got to leave around 11:30. He had been there since the morning, and he was exhausted. He thought about calling Liz, but he remembered that she said she was busy tonight. She was weird about it, like she didn’t want him to know what she was doing, but he hadn’t pried too much. Some things she had to keep to herself, he guessed. Maybe he just didn’t want to know. It was good though. Sleep was looking like a really good option right now, and if Liz came over, he was sure sleeping wasn’t on the agenda. He got into the Jeep, drive home, and walked through the front door. His mother was still up for some reason.

MRS. EVANS: Max…I was hoping that you’d be home tonight.

MAX: Hi, Mom…what are you doing up this late? Don’t you have to be at work early tomorrow?

MRS. EVANS: Well…with you working all of the time, I hardly get a chance to see you.

MAX: Mom, I’m sorry, it’s just…

MRS. EVANS: I know…my kids are growing up, that’s all…

MAX: Mom…

MRS. EVANS: You know your sister hasn’t been here all day. I’ve had the house all to myself.

MAX: Well, I’m exhausted. I think I’m just going to turn in.

MRS. EVANS: Oh…Max…a letter came for you today. I put it on the steps.

MAX: Thanks.

MRS. EVANS: I was thinking. Maybe one day next week the four of us could go out to dinner.

MAX: Sure…that sounds nice. I haven’t gotten my schedule for then yet, but I’ll let you know. Good night, Mom.

MRS. EVANS: Good night.

Max walked up the stairs and picked up the letter. He looked at it. No return address, just his address on a plain white envelope with a stamp. As he walked into his room and plopped down onto his bed, he took out the note, and started to read it.

Max Evans:

You may have escaped us once, but we know where you are. We know your every move. And we know that there are more, Max. You are going to lead us to them, so we can stop your plot to take over the planet before it starts. You attempt to infiltrate our organization has met with failure. We have captured the shapeshifter, the one you call Nasedo. You have 72 hours to come and turn yourself in; tell us everything you know. After that, we kill one of you every day, and we start with this one. Then we move on to your family, your friends. Come to Frasier Woods, and we won’t have to kill anyone. The clock starts at midnight.

Max read it again, more carefully this time. He was struggling to keep his jaw from hitting the ground. How did they capture Nasedo? How did they get him to break, talk so easily about all of them? He tried to stop himself. This could be a joke, someone’s idea of a truly sick joke. Then he went back to the envelope. He found an ID card. Agent Pierce’s ID card.

He glanced at the clock. It was 10 minutes to midnight on a Thursday night. He did the math. He had until midnight Sunday to either find some way out of this, or turn himself in. The letter was unsigned, but it was obvious that the Special Unit had the means to make good on their threats. They knew that going after Max wouldn’t fix the problem as they saw it. They had to go after everyone close to him. This wasn’t just about him, or even Michael, Isabel, and Tess anymore. The Special Unit were going to go after his parents, Alex, Maria, Liz… The thought was too much for him to bear. Anyone who knew any of them in any way was in imminent danger. They had to stop them, once and for all. They had seventy-two hours.


Liz, Maria, Tess, and Isabel were sitting on the couches in Tess’s family room. Tess had called Isabel earlier in the day, wondering if she wanted to come. Isabel couldn’t believe that the three of them were doing this, but she wasn’t going to mess it up. She even broke a date with Alex in order to come. They had watched a few ‘chick flicks’ and were now devouring the pizza that they had ordered.

TESS: So…what are we going to do now?

LIZ: Sorry, but some of us have jobs that we have to go to in the morning.

MARIA: Ditto.

TESS: Come on…there has to be something that we can find around here.

ISABEL: Like what? It’s midnight on a Thursday night. In this town, that means that everything is closed.

LIZ: Sorry Tess, but we have to get going. But, it’s been a pretty good time. I’m surprised. We have to do this again sometime.

TESS: See…I told you that we could all get along away from all of this alien stuff.

LIZ: You have me there, Tess.

Isabel’s cell phone began to ring, but it was in her purse, and so she couldn’t really hear it.

MARIA: Isabel…phone…

ISABEL: Just let it go to voicemail.

MARIA: OK…I miss my phone. I haven’t been able to talk my mom into a new one since mine broke, or, to put it more accurately, was broken back last fall.

LIZ: I remember that. Michael threw it out the window as I recall.

TESS: Really…how did that happen? I have to hear this one.

ISABEL: No…you really don’t.

Liz’s phone also started to ring, but she didn’t get up to get it either.

LIZ: Who could be calling me at this hour? I told my dad that I was spending the night over here, just so he wouldn’t bug me.

MARIA: What about Max?

LIZ: Max was working late tonight. He said he was just going to go home and crash.

ISABEL: Just answer the phone already.


She reached over to the counter and grabbed it.

LIZ: Hello.

MAX: Liz…hey…what’s up?

LIZ: Hey Max…

ISABEL: Of course. This is so pathetic.

MAX: We have a problem.

LIZ: Max, what is it?

MAX: I got a letter.

LIZ: A letter? What did it say?

MAX: We have to move. Nasedo is in trouble. Have you seen Isabel? I just tried to call her right before I called you.

LIZ: Yeah…she’s right here. We’re having some pizza.

MAX: Where are you?

LIZ: We’re at Tess’s.

MAX: Tess’s? Why didn’t you tell me that?

LIZ: Max…anyway…what happened? What does the letter say?

By this time, the other three had crowded around Liz’s phone, trying to hear what Max was saying.

MAX: Look…we need to talk, all of us…now.

LIZ: Sure, Max. Why don’t you come here?

MAX: Uhh…OK…hey…call the Sheriff; tell him we need to talk to him too.

LIZ: Now? It’s past midnight.

MAX: Liz…it’s important. I wouldn’t be this freaked otherwise.

LIZ: What about Alex and Michael? Do you know where they are?

ISABEL: Alex is at home, I think. I’ll call him.

The three of them looked squarely in Maria’s direction.

MARIA: Who knows where Michael is…

LIZ: Find Michael on your way. Isabel will call Alex.

MAX: Liz…trust me when I say this, this is bad, really, really bad.

LIZ: Max…what is it? It’s more than just Nasedo. Please tell me.

But Max had already hung up. Liz was really scared. It wasn’t normal for Max to be completely out of control like this, at least not sober anyway. She wished that Max just would have told her the whole story. Now she had the time until they all got here to worry, and she hated that. Isabel went to call Alex, and the rest of them just sat nervously, a certain newfound easiness replaced by total nervousness once again, but for a completely different reason.

Part 0 | Index
Max/Liz | Michael/Maria | Alex/Isabel | UC Couples | Valenti | Other | Poetry | Crossovers | AfterHours
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