Crush (AU, CC, Adult) [COMPLETE]

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nibbles2
Obsessed Roswellian
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Crush (AU, CC, Adult) [COMPLETE]

Postby nibbles2 » Sat Mar 07, 2009 3:41 pm

Winner Round 14

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Liz

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Max finding out that the woman he's seeing and had sex with - Lucy - is really 16 year old Liz Parker, sister of his best friend Michael in Crush by Nibbles2

Winner Round 13

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TITILE: Crush
DISCLAIMER: I don't own Roswell or any of these characters, they belong to Jason Katims and others. I'm just borrowing. I promise to treat them nicely.
RATING: Mostly teen but with a few adult scenes thrown in.
PAIRINGS: It's CC, Max & Liz, Maria & Michael.
SUMMARY: Liz has had a crush on her big brother's best friend for most of her life, now she has a chance to get close to him.

Special thanks to Michelle in Yonkers for betaing this for me.


Banner by precariousem. Thanks Em, it's awesome.


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One
Liz

“I look like a sixteen year old.”

My best friend doesn’t look up from the magazine she’s reading on my bed. “You are sixteen,” she points out unhelpfully.

“This is never going to work. What’s the point of getting fake id’s if I look like a sixteen year old? The bouncers will take one look at me and laugh.”

Maria puts down the magazine and pulls me to sit down on the bed beside her. “With the right hair and make up and a totally slutty top you’ll look way older, trust me.”

I can’t help but look dubiously at our reflection in the full-length mirror opposite my bed. I’m three months older than Maria and yet she looks a lot older than I do. I could pass for fourteen if I tried; Maria looks eighteen. I point that out to her.

“I’m dressed and wearing make up, you’re in pyjamas with baby ducks on them. Of course you look younger than I do.”

She has a point, I guess. Her tight jeans and tank top make her look sexy, my pyjamas make me look ‘cute’. I hate that word. I’m always described as cute. I think it’s because I’m so short; if I were taller, then maybe people would remember that I’m not a child. Just once I’d like to be treated like an adult and to be described as sexy. I’m sixteen years old, is it too much to ask to be treated like a grown up?

“Have a shower and then I’ll do your make up and your hair and I promise that I’ll make you look…” Maria trails off as she listens to the sound of a door opening and closing in the hallway outside my room. It’s my brother Michael making his way to the kitchen for his breakfast. Her eyes brighten and she stands up to check her appearance. “I’m going to wait for you in the kitchen.” She gives me a wink and then disappears out of the room.

I shake my head in amusement and then take my shower, as instructed.

When I’m dressed and my hair is toweled I go find her in the kitchen. She’s sitting at the table pretending to read the paper and discreetly staring at Michael, who is completely oblivious to her silent adoration. He looks up when I come in. “Hey Lizzie.”

“Lizzzzz,” I say stressing that it ends in ‘iz’ and not ‘izzie’.

He rolls his eyes at me and goes back to eating his breakfast. I pour out a bowl of Cheerios and take a seat at the table.

“Sorry Lizzzzzzz,” he says through a mouthful of cereal. A drop of milk falls onto his bare chest and runs down. He wipes it away with his finger. I’m surprised that I don’t have to restrain Maria from climbing onto the table to lick it off him. I nudge her and mimic wiping away drool from her mouth. She pulls a face at me and goes back to pretending to read the paper.

“What are you two up to today?” Michael asks

“We’ll just hang out, maybe go shopping. Maria’s working this afternoon and then we’re having a sleepover at Maria’s house tonight. What about you?” I’m not just asking to be polite, we need to know where Michael is going to be tonight. He doesn’t usually go out to clubs but on occasion he does, especially when he’s on the hunt for a new sexual conquest.

“Working later,” he tells me. “I’m going to head over to Max’s this morning and catch up.”

My mouth goes dry and my heart pounds against my ribcage. “M…Max?” Max Evans? Oh please say it’s Max Evans.

“Max Evans.”

I kick Maria under the table and she frowns at me in confusion. I jerk my head and wriggle my eyebrows. Amazingly, she seems to understand that I’m silently begging her to find out as much information as I can.

“Isn’t he the guy you used to hang around with all the time?” she asks. She knows it is, because a) like she’d forget the name of Michael’s best friend, and b) Max is the guy off of whose chest I’d lick milk.

When we were younger, Maria and I used to spend hours obsessing over Max and Michael. Along with their other friend Kyle Valenti, they were the hottest, coolest guys in town and every girl in Roswell was in love with at least one of them. Max Evans was, and still is, my dream guy. He was utterly gorgeous in every way. When I was alone I used to imagine what it would be like to marry him: I practised kissing him on my pillow every night and I doodled ‘Max + Liz 4ever’ all over my books. When I was twelve he went away to college and I haven’t seen him since. He had a job somewhere one summer, and he went travelling around Europe another, and on the few occasions when he did come home, I always happened to be visiting my aunt in Florida. I called Maria every night to get Max updates. She saw him twice and even took a blurry photograph of him playing basketball in the park with Kyle Valenti. I keep it in my box of most treasured possessions along with a birthday card he gave me once when I turned eleven. It’s his mother’s writing on the card but Max gave it to me so I treasure it.

“Max is my best friend,” Michael reminds Maria. “He’s been away at school for the last four years.”

“Is he just here to visit?”

“He’s here for the summer, he’s going to intern at his dad’s office. He’s studying law and his dad is a lawyer.”

“Is he going to work for his dad when he graduates?”

Michael shrugs. “I think so, he wants to work for one of those justice projects for a while first, you know the ones who campaign for people on death row and stuff, but I guess the plan is to eventually settle in Roswell and become his dad’s partner.” He looks at her curiously and grins evilly. “What’s with all the questions? Has somebody got a little crush?”

He’s talking to Maria so he doesn’t notice that my cheeks are blazing at that comment.

Maria rolls her eyes at him. “No— as if.”

“He’s a little old for you isn’t he? I’m sure that there are plenty of boys your own age who’d love to take you out.”

Maria looks like she doesn’t know what to think. Should she be thrilled that he thinks that lots of guys would love to take her out? Or should she be upset that he’s dismissing her as too young.

He stands up and puts his empty bowl in the sink before Maria can decide. “Have a good day,” he says to us as he leaves the kitchen.

“Will you do my hair now?” I ask Maria, partly to distract her.

As Maria styles and dries my hair I start to think about Max. I can’t wait to see him again. I wonder what he looks like. Has he changed much? It’s hard to tell from the photograph. Does he have a girlfriend? Would she come to Roswell to spend the summer with him? Or if he’s spending the summer in Roswell doesn’t it seem more likely that he’s currently single? I wonder what he’ll think of me. I might be able to pass for fourteen but I look a lot different than I did at twelve. I was pudgy and I had buck teeth then. I’ve lost all the baby fat and my teeth are now perfectly straight thanks to the wonders of modern orthodontics. Will he see me as the mature, grown up young woman I am, or will I still be his best friend’s little sister?

I catch sight of Maria’s despondent face in the mirror. She’s been in love with Michael forever but he still thinks of her as his little sister’s best friend. He treats us both like children. And I think he’ll always look at Maria that way.

But it could be different for me and Max. He hasn’t been around for four years. He’ll notice the change from child to young woman, unlike Michael who was around all the time so never noticed the change in Maria. I have a chance to make an impression on Max and to get him to notice Liz the grown up and not Liz the child.

***


I have to admit that Maria did a great job with my hair and make up. I do look a lot older. She’s used a lot of eyeliner and heavy eye shadow. It’s way too much for a normal Saturday but it’s necessary for the photographs we have to get taken for our fake id’s.

We sneak out of the house so that my parents or Michael don’t catch me. I’m allowed to wear make up and they probably wouldn’t tell me to take it off but they would probably have a hundred questions as to why I’m wearing my hair and makeup the way I am. I’d rather just avoid that inquisition.

I’m also wearing a Las Cruces University T-shirt. It used to belong to Michael and was once large enough to fit him. But about a year ago my Mom decided that Michael was old enough to do his own laundry. On his first attempt he managed to shrink all his t-shirts, flood the laundry room and wreck the washing machine. If he hadn’t also destroyed his favourite Metallica t-shirt I would have believed that he did it on purpose. Mom does all his laundry for him now, she even folds it up and puts it away for him. Sometimes I have to remind myself that he’s six years older than me.

***


“The t-shirt is a nice touch,” Alex Whitman tells me when we get to his house. It’s a little weird to be in his room. When we were younger Alex was one of our closest friends, but we grew apart when Maria and I discovered boys and Alex discovered computers and garage bands. We’re still friendly, but not like we used to be.

He uses a digital camera to take our pictures then gets to work at his computer. Maria and I have to come up with fake names and birthdates. Maria wants to be called Jasmine Jameson and Alex has to convince her to pick a more normal name and not a porn star name—the last thing we want to do is to attract attention, after all. So she settles for Jenny Michaels. I choose Lucy Smith. We keep our real birthdates and just change the year to make us twenty one and not sixteen. Alex advises us to memorize them in case we’re questioned.

“So what do you plan to do with these anyway?” he asks us.

“We want to go to that new club, Karma,” Maria informs him. She has snapped out of her Michael-induced funk and is really excited about tonight. I am too.

Roswell is pretty lame for entertainment. When you’re sixteen, there aren’t many options. There’s the movies, bowling, or a party at somebody’s house. The parties are never good. They are either adult supervised tame affairs with flat sodas and stale chips or they are unsupervised keggers where everybody is wasted within an hour and vomiting everywhere and the cops busting it up before midnight. There’s an underage club that nobody over the age of fourteen would be caught dead in. There’s an extremely tacky alien-themed night club that’s full of trekkies and tourists.

And now there’s Karma. A proper club with decent music and real cocktails. It’s for over twenty-ones but a couple of people from school have managed to get into it using fake ID’s and they said it was really good. I just want to be able to go somewhere that I can dance to good music, have a drink if I want to, and not have to wade through piles of teenagers who think they are so cool because they managed to get drunk from drinking a few glasses of beer.

“Done,” Alex announces. He turns to his printer and it spits out one which he hands to Maria. We admire it enthusiastically. It looks incredibly like a real Las Cruces University student card. I look at Alex expectantly and hold my hand out for mine.

He hesitates before giving it to me. “Promise me that no matter what happens you will not tell your brother where you got this card.”

“I promise Alex.”

“If anybody else with a cop for a brother had come to me looking for a fake ID, I would have denied all knowledge. But for you…I made an exception because I know I can trust you.”

“Thank you Alex,” I tell him gratefully as he hands me the card. I examine it carefully and I’m impressed.

I actually look twenty-one.

***


After getting our awesome ID’s, Maria and I hit the shops. At first I forgot that I was wearing such grown up hair and make up until I caught sight of my own reflection in a shop window. For a moment I didn’t recognise me. I really do look older, and if it isn’t too conceited to say, sexier. Plus I keep getting looks from guys, admiring looks. It makes me feel really confident. I think I might even be strutting.

I love it.

I love how I look and I love how I feel.

Maria takes me to a store where she gets a lot of her clothes. I usually feel really intimidated there, like I’m not fashionable enough and that all the other people there are judging me. But today I walk in head held up high and feel right at home. When Maria shows me a really sexy, tight silver top I accept it and try it on without argument. Normally it would take her at least thirty minutes to persuade me to try it on and even then I’d make her come into the dressing room to see it on me so that I didn’t have to come out in case anybody else saw me wearing something so … not me. This time, I walk out onto the shop floor and pose for Maria. She doesn’t even have to try to talk me into buying it.

After she has left to go to work, I carry out a few errands of my own before going to my favourite place in Roswell – The Bookstalk. It’s a book store and café. It’s in an old building with exposed brickwork and a winding staircase. It makes me think of New York or San Francisco or anywhere that’s bigger than Roswell.

I buy a couple of new books before making my way up to the top floor and order a coffee. Most of the tables are full but just as I think I’ll have to stand at the counter a couple leave a table close to the window and I hurry over to grab it before anybody else does. A waitress materializes and removes the dirty cups as I arrange my bags and get comfortable. She smiles at me and disappears, leaving behind a stack of books on the table. There are usually always books left on the table and I’ve never been able to figure out if they’re left behind by other customers or a clever marketing strategy. But either way I love browsing through the pile and discovering a hidden treasure. I found Ann Patchett that way.

Most of the books in the pile are history books which isn’t my favorite subject but at the bottom is a book called ‘101 Ways to Please Your Lover’. I look around to make sure nobody is watching, before I pick it up. I would just die if anybody caught me reading it. Michael caught me reading Maria’s copy of Cosmo a few months ago and I’m still trying to live that down. (It’s so hard to believe that he’s twenty-two.)

But with no Michael or parents around to catch me, I quickly become engrossed in the book. I can’t help but look at the useful diagrams and imagine Max doing those deliciously naughty things to me. Or me to him.

And then, for no reason I look across the room and straight into the gorgeous brown eyes of Max Evans. Without thinking, I lift my hand and wave at him. He looks at me with a perplexed expression and waves back.

He’s holding a tray with a coffee and piece of cake balanced on it. We look around the room at the same time and I see that all the tables are full, so I glance back at him and gesture to the empty chair across from me. He frowns again but slowly begins to make his way towards me.

I think he doesn’t recognize me.

My mind starts racing at a hundred miles a minute. They say that you never get a second chance to make a first impression. But I think I might just get that chance. This is an opportunity for me to show Max that I’m a mature adult and not some dumb little kid. That’s always going to be Maria’s problem - Michael will always see her as his little sister’s best friend. Just like I’m Max’s best friend’s little sister. But I don’t have to be, I can be Lucy Smith, twenty one year old college student. Even if it’s only for half an hour. And maybe then when he realises who I really am, he’ll see me for who I really am and not his best friend’s little sister.

It’s worth a shot.

I hastily drop the book I was reading onto the floor and smile up at him as he reaches the table. My heart is racing, but somehow I manage to act cool.

“Hi Max, it’s good to see you.”

He pauses awkwardly, torn between trying to decide if it’s ruder to let me know that he doesn’t recognise me or to pretend that he does. “Hi, you too.”

I decide to let him off the hook. “You don’t recognise me, do you?” I ask with my best ‘look’. It’s a small smile and then glance up at him, almost shyly, through my eyelashes. I’ve spent ages practising that look in the mirror, Maria says it’s my most effective weapon.

He looks flustered but I can’t tell if it’s because he’s been caught out or because of ‘the look’. He smiles ruefully at me, “Sorry, no.”

OK, moment of truth time, so to speak.

“I’m Lucy Smith…” I pretend to wait for him to recognise the name but he looks guiltily blank. “We used to be in the same class in high school.”

“I’m sorry…Lucy…I’m hopeless with names… Am I still allowed sit here?”

I cock my head to the side as if I’m considering it, then smile and nod. He returns my smile with a killer one of his own and takes the seat.
Now what do I do? Should I go back to reading or engage in conversation? Would it make me appear desperate if I start talking to him if he doesn’t want to talk to me? I look at him and see that he’s looking back at me, he smiles.

He has the most gorgeous smile, ever. In fact, he is the most gorgeous guy ever. He always was, but he’s lost his boyish looks and now he’s a totally sexy man. He’s got rid of his bangs which I used to adore and grown his hair out a little. I would pay a lot of money to run my fingers through his hair. And he’s been taking care of his body, he looks really muscled and toned under his t-shirt.

It is just not possible for him to be single. Some lucky, lucky bitch must have snapped him up.

“Are you sure we were in the same class?” he asks me suddenly. Before I can reply he continues, “Because, I think I’d remember you.”

Oh my God, I think he’s flirting with me. OK, calm down Liz. Act cool.

“Why do you say that?” I ask coyly.

He grins that oh-so sexy grin. “I just think I’d remember you. What classes had we together?”

“Oh, uh… English and um… History.”

His eyes narrow as he carefully examines my face. “You do look familiar.”

“I did my hair differently, and I’ve lost weight. And I used to pretty much keep to myself.”

He seems to accept that explanation. He waves his fork at my t-shirt. “So you go to Las Cruces? What are you studying?”

“Biology. What about you? I remember that you got into Northwestern.” Crap, that makes me sound like a stalker.

“Yeah, I’m studying law. I’m back in town to work with my dad for the summer.”

“Do you get back to Roswell often?” There, that makes me sound less stalkerish.

“No, not really. I had an internship at a firm in Chicago last summer and the summer before that I travelled around Europe with Michael… Michael Guerin, he was in our class too.”

“I remember him.”

And just like that I’m having a real conversation with Max Evans. I could listen to him talk all day, he’s so passionate and smart and interesting. He’s not like the idiots I go to school with who can only talk about what a dick Mr. Lombardi our history teacher is, or how much they drank at Paulie’s party at the weekend. Max and I have a conversation about real things.

*


Like travelling…

What was Europe like? I’d love to go there.”

“Europe is beautiful, really different from here of course. Much different from what I expected.”

“What were you expecting?”

He laughs, “I don’t know really. The usual clichés from TV I guess.”

“So they’re not true? Frenchmen don’t wear striped sweaters and carry around strings of garlic around their necks?”

“Sadly, no.”

“Damn.”

“I know, it’s such a disappointment,” he sighs dramatically and we both laugh. “Actually, you do find a lot of the clichés in the really heavy tourist areas but once you travel away from there you get to see what it’s really like.”

“What surprised you most?”

“The Eastern European countries, like Poland and the Czech Republic. I was expecting really grim, dour, poor countries but it’s not like that at all. I mean, they certainly don’t have the same levels of wealth that we have here and in the western part of Europe but I always thought they would be very deprived places.”

“I would have too, so it’s not like that?”

“No, not at all. They are really beautiful countries with some amazing cities. Prague is gorgeous, it has to be one of my favorite places. The architecture is amazing. It puts our cities to shame.”

“Huh, when Mi – ” I stop myself from saying Michael just in time. “Uh… when my friend came back from Europe I asked him what it was like and all he said was that the beer was great and the chicks were hot.”

“Which is true,” Max laughs. Then he sobers and gives me a heated look, “But Roswell has great beer and hot chicks too.”

*

And literature…

We check out each other’s purchases. I have the new edition of Anne Frank’s diary and Max has ‘For Whom the Bell Tolls’ by Hemingway.

Max had been to the Anne Frank museum in Amsterdam. “It was actually kind of embarrassing, I’d never read her diary before. I think I must be the only person in the world who hadn’t. But it was still a very moving experience. I read the book later, on the train to Berlin. I think having seen where she had lived while she wrote that diary helped me picture it better, and it really came home to me how difficult it must have been for them all there. Michael read it when he was younger and he said that it sounded like an adventure to him and it wasn’t until he had seen the annex for himself that he realised how difficult it must have been for them all.”

“That’s a good point. I always thought it sounded kind of cool. But then I was thirteen when I read it. I think I’ll probably get something different from it this time.”

Max nods his head emphatically. “That’s the great thing about good books. You get something different each time you read them. Like, with Steinbeck. The first time I read ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ I though it was just a story about a man travelling through America and doing good deeds but I read it again last year for the first time in ages and I realised it was so much more than that.”

“I love it when that happens – when you read a book again and discover something completely new from the first time you read it.”

*

And politics…

“Travelling is a real eye opener. There’s a whole world out there and I don’t think we know enough about it here in the US. Europeans are much more clued into world affairs than we are. They speak several languages, they travel more. I’d love to go back and spend more time there. Or go to Asia maybe, I’d love to see China. Or South America. Most of the crises we have to face now are global problems — food prices, oil shortage, climate warming — they’re all global and we need to start thinking globally. The only way to really understand that is to travel and see the world.”

“I totally agree. I plan to travel once I graduate. I often look up websites from outside the US for news, it’s the only way to get the complete picture.”

Max nods his head vigorously, “But if you say that to some people they accuse you of being unpatriotic. I love my country, but when you travel abroad you realise that there’s a lot of American jingoism being used to cover a multitude of sins.”

***


Before I know it, the café is empty and the staff are beginning their clean up. We’re the last to leave.

“Wow, is that the time? The last hour flew,” Max comments as we gather our belongings. He stoops to the floor suddenly and picks something up. It’s the sex book I was reading earlier. “Is this yours?”

I blush like the school girl I am and shake my head, “They leave books lying around here.”

Max looks down at it and realises what he’s holding. He drops it onto the table like it’s burned him and blushes too. He’s so cute.

We share embarrassed grins.

“Well, I should go.”

“Yeah, thanks for the company Lucy. It was lovely getting to know you. It’s a shame we didn’t talk like this before.”

“We have all summer to make up for lost time,” I tell him and give him ‘the look’ again.

“Are you free tonight?” he asks.

I want to squeal and jump up and down in excitement. Max Evans has just asked me out. This is the single best moment of my life. And then I remember that I’m not free tonight. I have plans with Maria. But maybe that’s a good thing. I don’t want to appear too eager. I already behaved like a stalker and made it sound like I was a loner nerd in school. I have to show him I’m cool. And they do say ‘treat him mean, keep him keen’.

“I have plans with a friend. We’re going to that new club that’s opened up, Karma.”

“That’s too bad.”

Tell me about it. “You’re not going out with Michael Guerin and Kyle Valenti? You three were usually inseparable in high school.”

“Kyle is in Dallas, he’s going to see a game this weekend and Michael is working. Can you believe Michael Guerin is a cop?”

“No, last thing I would ever have believed.”

We laugh at the thought. It’s the usual reaction when people think about Michael being a cop. He’s good at his job and he loves it but even though he’s being doing it for a year I still don’t believe he’s really a cop. Sometimes I feel like it’s a very convoluted and drawn out prank.

“But just because I’m going out with my friend doesn’t mean we couldn’t dance if we happened to run into each other,” I say.

He smiles again. “That’s good to know.”

“So maybe I’ll see you there?”

“I hope so.”

I smile at him and walk away. I really, really want to look back to see if he’s watching me. But if he is watching me then I don’t want him to see me looking back at him. So I have to keep walking forward. When I round the corner and am out of view, I can’t help doing my happy dance.


***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Wed Mar 09, 2011 3:12 pm, edited 46 times in total.

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nibbles2
Obsessed Roswellian
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In which the players get ready to go out.

Postby nibbles2 » Sat Mar 14, 2009 1:43 pm

Thank you to everybody for reading.

Heavenli24 Thank you.
yayaliens
spacegirl23 Thanks for reading. There will be candy, I promise. But it comes later.
destinyc Inevitable and unavoidable.
Emz80m Thank you.
Alien_Friend I love that you use the expression ‘thus far’. It made me day.
Christable Thanking you.
cocopucks Thank you.
Mary Mary Thanks
girl afraid Thank you.
begonia9508 Well it’s been years and she’s changed a lot.
Wench on a leash Yeah Poor Liz, she’s pretty but she’s just not ‘sexy’.
somewhere87 The problem is that Michael only sees Maria as a girl. She wants him to see her as a woman.
DreamerLaure Thank you.
April Thank you.
cassie Thanks.
crazedearthgirl Thank you.
Kay_b Thanks.
vilandragirl Thank you.
tequathisy Nope, definitely not easy.
tamashii Thanks.
Angel eyes Good to know.




. ______ .


Chapter two

Max

I was having my doubts about being back in Roswell for the summer. After four years of living in the big city and travelling around Europe, Roswell isn’t the most appealing place to be. But to my surprise, it’s not as bad as I expected.

For one thing it’s great to be able to drive from one end of the town to the other without getting stuck in a traffic jam. It’s great to walk down the sidewalk without being jostled and pushed. I enjoy knowing people and them knowing me in a way I didn’t before. I missed my family more than I realised. It’s been fun catching up with Isabel, being pampered by my Mom and I’m looking forward to working with my dad. Seeing Michael and Kyle again and getting to hang out with them was great. As a guy I’m probably not supposed to admit this, but I missed Michael and Kyle a lot. I probably met dozens of guys I have a lot more in common with than them over the last few years but I didn’t enjoy hanging out with any of them as much as I do with Michael and Kyle.

And there’s new stuff that I’d never noticed before. Like the stars in the sky which I always took for granted until I moved away from the desert. Roswell has a new vibe to it as well, it’s not just a tacky tourist town either, there’s a buzz around the town that wasn’t here before. And Lucy… well she was a very pleasant surprise.

It’s weird, part of me felt like I had known her all my life.

I certainly wasn’t expecting romance or anything like that this summer. I thought I’d work with dad, have fun with the guys and maybe, get lucky now and again. But then I met Lucy – a smart, beautiful, interesting woman that I felt a real connection with. She had a great smile and she kept giving me this look that made my heart pound in my chest. I’m excited at the thought of getting to know her.

I must have been walking around high school with blinders on to have not noticed her before. Of course, I’m getting way ahead of myself here. We had coffee, that’s all. But she seemed interested in me. At least, I hope so.

I’m so lost in my thoughts that I don’t realise that Isabel has joined me at the kitchen table until she prods me in the arm.

“Earth to Max,” she says in irritation.

“Sorry Iz, I was worlds away.”

“You OK?”

“Great. Mom and Dad are gone out to dinner with the Henderson’s, there’s a quiche in the fridge we can heat up and we can make our own salad.”

Isabel walks over the fridge to examine the quiche and grimaces. I did the same, my Mom is a great cook when she does normal food but when she experiments – and this quiche was an experiment – well, that’s when you conjure an invitation to dinner at a friend’s house.

“I have a date tonight, we’re going out to dinner. Where are Mom and Dad going?” Isabel asks.

“The Steakhouse place near Dad’s office.”

Isabel seems pleased with that and sets about disposing of the quiche.

“Who’s the lucky guy?”

“His name is Jesse Rameriez, he works with dad but dad doesn’t know we’re seeing each other yet so please keep that to yourself.”

“Make me a sandwich and my lips are sealed forever.”

Isabel sighs dramatically but makes me a sandwich anyway. “What are you doing tonight?”

I shrug, “Not sure, Kyle is in Dallas and Michael’s working and you have a date so that doesn’t really leave me many options. I’ll probably just stay in and watch a DVD.”

“Max, it’s your first Saturday back in Roswell. I didn’t realise that the guys were busy or I wouldn’t have made plans with Jesse. Why don’t you come out to dinner with us?”

I raise an eyebrow to question if she really wants me to tag along on her date and she laughs.

“OK, then meet us for a drink later.”

“Where will you be?”

“We’ll probably go to Joe’s. That’s just about the only cool place in town.”

“What about that new club… Karma?”

She shrugs, “Not really my thing but it’s supposed to be good. How do you know about Karma? ”

“Saw it when I was passing on the street,” I say flippantly. I finish my sandwich, which was really good and put my plate and glass in the dishwasher. “Hey, do you remember a girl from school called Lucy Smith?”

She shakes her head, “No, who was she?”

“She used to be in our class.”

“Don’t remember her,” she says with a shrug.

“Do you have your yearbook? Mine is in a box somewhere.”

“Mine too, sorry.”

Our parents redecorated our rooms when we left for college so that they would be more fitting for adults than teenagers. They left most of our stuff in boxes for us to sort through ourselves so that we could decide what to keep and toss. My stuff is still in boxes gathering dust in the garage. Mom says if I don’t sort through them this summer they are all going in the trash. Except for the fact that there is maybe three or four books and a few other things that I want to keep, I’d let her toss the lot. Now I can add my yearbook to the shortlist of things I want to keep.

Maybe I’ll do that tonight.

Who am I kidding? The moment Lucy mentioned Karma there was only ever one place I was going to be tonight.

***


Maria


I am a genius.

There is no other word for it. With just a little blush, some eyeliner and a curling tongs I have transformed a girl into a woman. Liz looks absolutely smokin’ if I do say so myself. She always looks gorgeous no matter what kind of make up she wears but to be perfectly honest, she usually looks fifteen. Now thanks to me, she can easily pass for twenty-one or twenty-two.

It’s not just the hair and make up though, or the awesome top and short skirt she’s wearing either. It’s her attitude. Liz has pulled a major transformation of her own today. Gone is the sweet, shy Liz I’m used to and in her place is confident, kick-ass Liz. There’s something I can’t put my finger on, something different.

“I look great,” she tells me as she admires her reflection in the mirror. “Thanks Maria.”

“I can’t take all the credit—you’ve got some seriously gorgeous genes working in your favour too!”

She doesn’t even try to disagree which she normally does when I compliment her, she just turns and checks out her ass in the mirror. And she looks pleased with it.

My own ass is a different story, I don’t have one. I sigh and start on my own hair and make-up. Behind me in the mirror I can see Liz sitting on my bed, dreamily staring into space and smiling.

“Ok, what is up with you? If I didn’t know better I’d think you were high.”

She giggles and pulls a chair over beside me. “Something amazing happened today.”

“What?”

“After you went to work, I was having coffee in The Beanstalk and I saw Max Evans there. We had the best conversation!”

Ah, that explains it. Yes, I’ve often sat with a goofy smile on my face after spending time with Michael. “That’s so cool. What did you talk about?”

“Politics, travelling, school, stuff.”

“Boring,” I tease her.

“No, it was really great. It was a real conversation Maria, not one where he asks what grade I’m in and tells me how much I’ve grown.”

“Because that would be a lie shortie.”

She smacks me playfully on the arm for that remark. “It was so cool Maria, we had a proper adult conversation.”

“That is cool,” I admit. Michael still talks to me like I’m his kid sister. “How did you manage that?”

She looks away guiltily for a moment and then grins. “He didn’t actually know it was me.”

Huh? “What do you mean?”

“Well, I had my hair and make-up done the way you had it this morning and he didn’t recognise me so I told him that my name was Lucy Smith and that I used to be in his class at school. And he totally believed me. He really thinks that I’m the same age as him.”

“So you didn’t tell him who you are?” She shakes her head. “And he didn’t guess?”

“No, he did say that I was familiar but that was all.”

“So what are you going to tell him the next time you see him?”

She shrugs “I guess I’ll tell him the truth and that it was just a joke.”

I resume my make-up and Liz sits grinning at the memory of her conversation with Max. “He flirted with me,” she blurts out suddenly, like she’s been holding it in for too long.

“Very cool,” I tell her and she smiles in agreement.

“He’s so gorgeous Maria,” she gushes and then launches into a detailed description of all the finer points of his appearance. “I knew he was gorgeous but I didn’t expect him to have become even hotter than he was before.”

I laugh, I knew she’d think that. Although I am a little surprised at how quickly she’s fallen into her old Max obsession. Though maybe I shouldn’t be. I was never attracted to Max, I could see that he was pretty hot. Almost as hot as Michael in fact. The last time I saw Max (read, stalked him at the basketball courts so that I could report back to Liz who was in Florida at the time) I thought he had really blossomed. So I can understand why Liz is now waxing lyrical about him. I let her babble without interruption, even though she usually never listens to me explain why Michael is so sexy. As somebody who has been crushing on a guy I can never hope will see me the same way for years, I understand the need to gush and babble to a sympathetic ear.

I am slightly jealous that she got to fool Max. I often wonder what it would be like if Michael hadn’t known me for most of my life. Would he find me attractive? Would he ask me out? Would he even notice me?

Probably not, I have no butt and no breasts and I know for a fact that they are the main attributes Michael looks for in a girl.

I’m a little worried too. Liz is so happy about her conversation with Max this afternoon. She seems to think that it’s the first step in having a relationship with him. But I don’t think so. She’s sixteen after all and he’s twenty two. She’s a minor and he’s an adult. He might look at her differently but that doesn’t mean anything will happen between them when he figures out her name is really Liz Parker.

She’s so happy and confident not, I’d hate to see her get crushed when Max finds out the truth.

***


Despite Liz’s Max-induced confidence and my own bravado, we’re both nervous wrecks as we prepare to make our bid for entry to the club. I take a couple of sniffs of my aromatherapy oil and offer some to Liz. She actually takes it which is a sure sign that she’s really nervous. I wish I’d brought my grief relief now. Damn.

“Ok, deep breaths. We can do this. We look hot and our ID’s are perfect,” I tell Liz trying to sound confident and sure of myself. She nods in agreement but I don’t think she believes it anymore than I do. We practice giving our fake names and birthdates one more time and then decide to go for it.

We walk down the block towards the club and as we come in sight of the door, we laugh and pretend to be having a great time. Hopefully by acting like it’s no big deal nobody will notice that we’re shaking in our boots.

“The worst case scenario is that we don’t get in and we have to go home,” Liz reminds me as we join the queue behind a group of loud girls.

Actually, I think she’s wrong. The worst case scenario is that the bouncers detain us and call the cops and then Michael shows up. It would be incredibly embarrassing if he caught us. I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t tell our parents because he’s cool like that. But he would lecture us and it would just compound his idea that I’m a dumb kid who is way too young for him.

I’d love to be able to do what Liz did with Max this afternoon and make Michael see the real me for once. But that’s never going to happen.

“I’m so ready to dance my little heart out,” I say. Liz doesn’t even hear as she’s busy scanning the queue like a secret service agent albeit, with far less subtlety.

“Who are you looking for?”

“No one,” she says very quickly and without meeting my gaze. Liar. I stare at her the way that Mom does when she knows I’m lying and it works. She cracks.

“I sort of mentioned to Max that I might be coming here.”

“What?”

“He probably won’t come anyway.”

“Liz, are you insane? Do you want us to get caught?”

“No, of course not,” she sighs in exasperation and looks down at the ground for a moment. “It just happened, he asked me out. Max Evans asked me out Maria. And I had to turn him down. Can you imagine? I just mentioned that I was going here so he wouldn’t think I didn’t like him.”

“It’s one thing to play a prank on him in the bookshop Liz, but to lead him on and arrange a date at a nightclub that we’re too young to be allowed into is another thing completely.”

“I know that Maria. And it’s not a date. I just mentioned that I was coming here and maybe I might see him, that’s all. It’s very unlikely that he’ll come. Michael and Kyle are both busy so he has nobody to come with.”

Ok, that’s good. Although by the expression on her face, Liz obviously doesn’t think so. Seriously though, what does she think is going to happen between her and Max?

“Evening Ladies. ID’s please.”

We were so busy talking that we never even realized that the line had moved and we were now at the front. We both look at the doorman in surprise and then fumble in our purses for the cards. It happens so suddenly that neither of us has the chance to be nervous. The doorman gives our cards a cursory look and waves us inside.

We walk through the door and into the club. Loud music, bright lights, the sounds of people having a great time assaults our senses. We both grab each other and squeal with excitement, Max Evans completely forgotten for the moment.

Tonight is going to be awesome.

***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Fri Mar 20, 2009 1:43 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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nibbles2
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In which Liz and Max get closer. Too close?

Postby nibbles2 » Fri Mar 20, 2009 1:44 pm

xmag Yes, as Liz said in the first part, she has a blurred photograph of Max that Maria took while she was stalking observing him.
Alien_friendUnfortunately Michael is not going to see Maria as anything other than a kid for a while yet.
Keepsmiling7 Yeah, Liz is playing a dangerous game.
Heavenli24 It’s all covered in this part so you don’t have to wait long.
abs007
Emz80m
Begonia9508
Addicted2AmberEyes Do you think this will go well?
spacegirl23 LoL, I think I must be the worst candy writer in the biz. The candy will happen but not just yet.
tequathisy Or both!!
Sarammlover He hasn’t seen Liz in four years. She was a pudgy, unattractive twelve-year old. This girl is a sexy twenty-two year old. He just hasn’t made the connection. Besides Liz didn’t feature highly on his radar before he left Roswell. She was a child and he was four years older than her. That’s a world of difference at that age.
Smac Yeah, sort of.
Dalestateshorty Not so demure and proper in this part, I think you’ll find.
Wench on a leash Wonder no more…

. _____ .

Image


To find out all the necessary info GO HERE

It's a very worthwhile cause and it's brilliant fun so get involved.

. _____ .


Crush – 3

Liz

This sounds dumb, even to me, but the second Max Evans walks into the club I feel it. Somehow everything changes. The air feels more electric - like there was a static charge. The beat of the music becomes more sensual – like it’s beating in rhythm with my heart.

I turn around and scan the crowd. Sure enough, there he is by the door and he too, is scanning the crowd. Maria and I met up with a group of seniors from school and we’re hanging out on a balcony overlooking the main dance floor. The height gives me the advantage of being able to see Max without being seen by him. So I get to admire him for a few minutes. He looks so hot. Like almost all the other guys here tonight he’s wearing jeans and a shirt but he wears them way better than any other guy I’ve ever seen. He bops his shoulder to the music and frowns as he tries to figure out his next move. I note with glee that he appears to be alone. Does that mean he came specifically to meet me?

Maria notices that I’ve stopped dancing and she comes to stand beside me and follow my gaze. “He’s grown up nicely,” she jokes.

“I know.” I smooth down my hair and check my reflection in one of the mirrored columns nearby. “I’m going to go say hi.”

“Wait,” Maria grabs my arm and pulls me back. “Maybe that’s not such a good idea, Liz. He’s going to find out who you really are sooner or later and when he does he’ll tell Michael that we were here. If he doesn’t see you, you can say that you were joking about being here.”

“No, Max is cool. He won’t say anything.” She still doesn’t let go of my arm. So I try a different tactic. “Maria, he’s here to see me. I’m just going to hang out with him for a little while, maybe dance some with him. If it was Michael and you could have that with him, wouldn’t you do the same as me?”

She sighs in exasperation and then lets go of my arm. “Fine, go. Have a good time. But be careful.”

I smile and assure her that I’ll be fine before I make my way to the stairs. Max has moved over to the bar and is trying to get the attention of the bartender. I take a minute to decide how I’m going to approach him before a flash of inspiration comes to me.

I head over to the small bar located on the balcony and order another rum and coke for myself and a bottle of beer for Max. It’s what Michael drinks and I’m hoping Max does, too. Unlike the main bar below, this bar is quiet and I’m served almost right away. With the two drinks in hand, I make my way down the stairs, squeeze through the throng around the bar and slide into a spot beside Max. Because of the crowd around us, I’m pressed right up against him.

He looks down to see who’s rubbing against him and his face lights up with that adorable, sexy smile of his. I place the bottle of beer on the bar in front of him. “Hi, Max.”

He lifts the bottle and clinks it gently against my glass. “Hi, Lucy.”

Very cool Liz, I think to myself proudly.

“Wanna go someplace less crowded?” he asks.

“Please.” We push our way back through the crowd. Max keeps his hand on the small of my back the entire time. It feels crazily intimate.

We steer clear of the crowded dance floor and find a small, empty table. It’s in a dark corner near a fire exit so it’s not the ideal location for people wanting to have a good time but it’s perfect for two people who want to have a quiet moment to themselves.

“It’s busy here tonight,” Max comments.

I nod in agreement. “And not a trekkie in sight.”

He laughs. “I think it’s kind of sad, actually.”

I think he’s being serious. “Why is that?”

He shrugs sheepishly, “I like that in Roswell the weirdo-alien nut-trekkies are king. Don’t you get fed up going to clubs that only let in people who look a certain way and dress a certain way? It’s nice to be in a town where that’s reversed.”

“I never looked at it that way before,” I admit.

“It’s probably not something you’ve ever had to worry about. You’re so beautiful and sexy that you prob—” He stops talking abruptly and even under the multicoloured strobe lights I can tell that he’s blushing.

“Please continue,” I say, quiet nonchalantly. Thank God I have a few drinks in me already or I would be a puddle of goo on the floor right now.

“I just meant that you probably don’t have a problem getting into all the hot clubs in Los Cruses.”

I just smile and swallow down my drink. “Let’s dance.” I take his hand and pull him towards the dance floor.

The music is fast and pumping but we find our own rhythm. Whereas Maria and I were jumping around like two crazy loons, Max and I move together fluidly, holding hands, rubbing against each other and staring into each other’s eyes. It’s so hot and sexy. It makes me feel excited and tingly in all the right places.

I can’t tell how long we dance for but after a while we pull apart, Max goes to get drinks while I make my way back over to the table we were at before and which luckily is still deserted. My butt has barely touched the seat when Maria appears before me and she looks mad.

“What the hell are you doing, Liz?” she hisses.

I look around frantically in case Max sees her but he’s nowhere in sight.

“He’s at the bar,” Maria informs me. “This is crazy, Liz. You’re going to get caught. We’re supposed to be keeping a low profile, in case you’ve forgotten, we’re breaking the law by being here.”

Irritated that she’s invading my Max bubble I snap at her. “Relax Maria. Nobody is going to recognize me, I don’t look anything like I normally do.”

“You’re wearing extra eyeliner and a slutty top, it’s not exactly cosmetic surgery, Liz. Most people in this town know who you are. Somebody will recognize you.”

I guess she has a point, even if I don’t want to admit it. “Ok fine, I’ll stay here in the shadows.”

“With Max?”

“Yeah. We’re having an amazing time Maria. He really likes me.”

“What about me? We’ve been planning this night for weeks. We’re supposed to be having a great time together and now you’ve ditched me to spend all your time with a guy you barely know. Meanwhile I’m left dancing with a bunch of girls I barely know.”

I flush guiltily in realization that I am acting kind of shitty towards Maria. But this might be the only chance I ever get with Max. I can’t let it go. “Maria, he’s not some guy I barely know. He’s Max Evans. I’ve been in love with him my whole life. And for the first time ever he’s looking at me and seeing me and not just Michael’s kid sister. You know that if you had the chance to hang out with Michael like this and dance with him that you’d take it too. I just want to spend some time with Max. Please, let me have this one night.”

She glares at me for a moment before she nods, though I can tell she’s not happy about it. “Just be careful, Liz. He won’t appreciate being made a fool of.”

“Thanks Maria.”

Still looking pissed off, she waves at me and walks off, passing Max on her way.

He joins me at the table and puts my drink down in front of me. “Who was that, she looks familiar?”

“That was Mar…Marlene. She was in our class too.”

Max shakes his head. “I must have amnesia. I hardly recognize anybody here.”

“That’s good, it means I can have you all to myself,” I purr. Oh my God, I actually purred. How embarrassing. On the other hand Max seems to like it.

The rest of the evening passes so quickly, we dance some more, flirt some more and drink some more.

Around midnight I pay a visit to the restroom and examine my reflection in the mirror. I’m appalled to realize that I’m glowing with a sheen of sweat, my make-up is running and my hair looks like I stuck my finger in an electric socket. Time for some emergency repair work. I splash cold water on my face, retouch my make up, comb my hair and use some wet wipes to clean my underarms and neck. Then I borrow some perfume to spritz on my pulse points before I go back out to Max. As I make my way back to him I notice that he has sweat patches under his arm and his skin, too, is glowing. Or I guess as he’s a guy, it’s ok to say that he’s sweating.

“You look hot,” I say as I reach him.

“Thank you,” he replies with fake arrogance. He grins at me.

I love the way he grins.

There’s a door open at the side that leads out into a smoking area and we decide to go outside for a few minutes.

The cool night air is heavenly on my skin. There’s a gentle breeze blowing that cools me right down. It’s also blowing disgusting cigarette fumes in our direction, unfortunately.

“Let’s go over there,” Max suggests, pointing to a small gate leading out into the parking lot.

The parking lot is mostly empty. Michael says that catching drunk drivers on their way home from clubs and bars makes having to work Saturday nights worthwhile and so I guess that most people have learned to leave their cars at home and catch a cab instead.

“I wish there was somewhere to sit down,” I grumble.

“My car is over there,” Max points towards a silver sedan in the corner. It’s actually his mother’s car, I’ve seen her driving it around town. But I don’t say anything.

I’m a little tipsy, the ground is uneven so naturally, halfway there, I fall off my shoe and stumble sideways into Max. He throws his arms around me to prevent me from falling to the ground. I end up with wrapped tightly in his arms with my hand pressing right against his crotch.

There’s an apology on the tip of my tongue but one look at Max’s face stops me from talking. He’s looking at me in a way no guy has ever looked at me before. It’s sheer desire and lust. We both stand frozen in that position for a millisecond and then he lowers his head until we’re eye to eye and lip to lip.

Oh. My. God.

Max Evans is kissing me.

I’m kissing Max Evans.

Max Evans and I are kissing.

With tongue.

The next few minutes are a complete blur to me. Somehow we end up at his mother’s car. I’m sitting on the hood, my legs wrapped around his waist. My hands are clinging to the front of his shirt, holding him in position. His hands are everywhere — in my hair, down my back, along my arms, under my slutty top, up my thighs and under my too-short skirt. It’s amazing, incredible, fantastic. My whole body is on fire. His drags his lips away from mine and begins to kiss along my neck and my shoulder. He pushes the strap of my top away and sucks on my skin. I cry out in surprise and pleasure.

I realize then that he’s not going anywhere, that I can let go of his shirt. I release the material and let my hands do what they were made to do. Exploring Max Evans’s body. Like he ran his hands over me, I do the same to him. I tangle my fingers in his hair, I trace his jaw, I feel the muscles of his strong back, the tightness of his butt, the strength of his arms and the smoothness of his chest under his shirt.

Then we’re torn out of our lust-filled haze by the sound of a girl screaming. We pull apart, panting for breath. Behind us the girl screams again and we look in her direction. It’s coming from the smoking area. A guy has thrown her over his shoulder and is playfully smacking her ass. A bouncer rushes over to them and demands the guy put her down.

Max turns back to me, his breathing ragged. “Let’s go somewhere more private.”

I nod silently. He picks me up and lets me slide back to my feet, then he walks me to the passenger door of the car. Amazingly a smidgen of common sense permeates my Max-lust. “You can’t drive. You’ve been drinking.”

He swears under his breath. The disappointment is enough to kill me. I am not ready to stop kissing Max. It’s too soon. It’s too wonderful.

So I open the back door of his car and climb in. Max follows me in and closes the door. Once the door closes, we’re encased in semi-darkness. He draws closer to me and pulls me back to him. This time I’m sitting on his lap straddling him. We pick up right where we left off, with our mouths tasting each other and our hands laying claim to every inch of each other’s bodies that we can touch.

Almost without realizing it, I unbutton his shirt. Actually, I might not have gone to the bother of undoing some of the buttons and just pulled his shirt apart. He pushes me onto my back and his hands creep higher under my skirt.

“Max, please,” I cry out. I’m not sure exactly what I’m pleading for. I just know that I won’t survive this.

Then I feel something weird between my legs, rubbing against my inner thigh. It’s his cock.

Oh God.

I’m suddenly frozen in place. I don’t think I’m ready for this. It’s not the right time or the right place or the right circumstances. But it is the right guy. And I want him more than I’ve ever wanted anything in my life. I want to say stop, and at the same time I want it to happen.

Max doesn’t seem to realize that I’ve hesitated. He pushes inside me in a quick and sudden movement. I cry out again, this time in pain.

This is not how I planned to lose my virginity. This is all wrong. I’ve fucked up so badly.

The sound of Max’s grunts fill the car as he thrusts into me. He buries his face in my neck and sucks on my skin. I just lie there and don’t move. His hands grip my hips and he rocks me in time to his movements. Then he goes rigid and emits a really loud groan. His body shudders with release, and I feel him come inside me. He slumps against me then, spent. His breath is still uneven and ragged. After a moment, he places the sweetest, gentlest kiss on my lips. He’s looking at my face but in the darkness I don’t think he can make out my expression.

“Lucy,” he breathes happily.

It’s like being slapped in the face.

I push against his chest, pushing him away from me. He withdraws from me and adjusts his position so that he’s not lying on top of me.

I breathe slowly. In and out, in and out.

He’s peppering gentle kisses against my collarbone, his hands are caressing my overheated skin. I should be loving this. Five minutes ago I would have happily let him do this forever. Now I can barely stand it.

I clear my throat and realize that I’m close to crying. I will myself not to cry. “I have to go.” My voice is raspy and hoarse. I silently thank the darkness for hiding my face from him

He sits up and reaches for me. “What’s wrong? Lucy?”

I evade his embrace, open the door and practically fall out. “I… I’m sorry. My friend… I have to go.”

And then I’m running across the parking lot, tugging my skirt down. I can hear Max calling out to me but I don’t stop and I don’t look back. I push past all the smokers roughly and back inside the club.

Maria materializes beside me instantaneously. I’ve never been so glad to see her in all my life.

“Liz, are you all right?” she asks in a panicked tone.

“I want to go home.”

She ushers me out of the main door and into a taxi. As she gives the driver her address, I lean my head back and allow the tears to fall.

***

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In which it is the morning after the night before

Postby nibbles2 » Sun Mar 29, 2009 10:25 am

Thank you all for your feedback. I was worried about that part and how people would react to it. But I think you got what I was aiming for.

I've used a line from the show in this part.

Mary Mary Fix it? Is this fixable?
trulov No they didn’t use anything, and that comes up in this part.
Tamashii If he finds out.
RiceKrispy I don’t think Liz was expecting anything. That’s why she got so carried away. She simply wasn’t prepared.
destinyc Lots of trouble.
Heavenli24 I think you get some more insight into what they were thinking in this part.
keepsmiling7Yes, Maria is wise.
Addicted2AmberEyes It was never going to go well.
CandyXDreamer How many people really get the fantasy first time? Apart from fanfics characters?
DaleStateShorty Hoping Liz gets pregnant so that Max will find out is a little extreme. Wouldn’t it just be easier for him to walk into the Crashdown and see her?
Emz80m Liz never said stop and Max isn’t a mind-reader. It is a murky situation though.
xmag There will be consequences, but of what kind?
Kay_b Yeah.
Rowedog[b] I’m so scared.
[b]abbs007

Alien_Friend It did happen incredibly fast, too fast for Max to notice anything really. It doesn’t excuse him of course.
April Everybody’s worried about Michael’s reaction. He might surprise you.
Wench on a Leash If Liz had said no, he would have stopped straight away. He really thought Liz wanted it. If he had been sober, he would have read the signs better too. It was an unfortunate situation, for both of them.
chanks_girl Unfortuately neither of them were thinking clearly. Add alcohol to the mix and it was always going to end badly.
Cocogurl


. _____ .

Image


To find out all the necessary info GO HERE

It's a very worthwhile cause and it's brilliant fun so get involved.
. _____ .


Crush – 4

Maria

When Mom first told me that she and Jim Valenti were going out of town on a romantic weekend together I was completely grossed out. They’ve been dating for a few months and that’s been bad enough, but I knew that the romantic weekend would mark the beginning of the ‘Next Stage’ of their relationship.

Then, when Liz and I conceived the idea of getting fake IDs and going out to Karma, I began to see my mother’s dirty weekend as a golden opportunity. Liz stayed at my house, to ‘keep me company’ while Mom was away. We were able to get dressed in clothes my mother would never have allowed me out of the house in. And we were able to return well past our curfew without having to face the Amy Deluca Inquisition.

Now, I am extremely grateful that Mom and Jim are in Santa Fe. If they had been in Roswell last night, well I’d be dead by now.

By the time our taxi had reached my house, Liz was wailing inconsolably and talking gibberish. I managed to keep her quiet long enough to get her into the house without waking up the nosy neighbors who would be only too happy to report back to my mother. But once inside the house, Liz let loose. She cried. She talked. She vomited. It took me over an hour to calm her down, clean her up and get her into bed.

It took me another hour to clean up the bathroom and get the stains out of my jacket — that I had borrowed without asking from my mother.

Needless to say, I was fuming by the time I crawled into my bed beside Liz. As I lay there, listening to her snore, I worked on the lecture that I planned to deliver to her in the morning. I had a number of issues to raise with her. My annoyance at being ditched at the club. The fact that she lost her virginity in the back seat of a car. In a public parking lot. To a guy whom she barely knows. And who believes that she’s a twenty-two year old University of Los Cruses student named Lucy Smith. That she had unprotected sex. And that she got so drunk and out of control that I had to spend an hour cleaning up after her.

But when Liz woke this morning, the desire to lecture her diminished as it was quite clear she was really suffering from her hangover. A fact in which I took a little pleasure, I’m ashamed to admit.

And she did apologize, profusely, so as far as I’m concerned, that’s the end of the matter. Or the end of me being angry with her I should say, because it’s not really the end of the matter.

After a long shower and a short breakfast, I brought Liz to the doctor. She was given the morning after pill and was checked out. They took some blood to run tests for STD’s but told her it was far too early to tell and that she’d have to come back again.

Then finally they bring us into a small room and lecture us about the dangers of unprotected sex. It’s a lecture that I’ve been listening to since I was twelve, as safe sex is pretty much my Mom’s religion. Then we’re given a demonstration on how to use condoms. Again, this is nothing new to either of us. My Mom made me practice on a carrot the first time I had a boyfriend. (Aged thirteen.) Naturally, I shared all this information with Liz and we both perfected the art of sheathing carrots.

Anyway, we both listen attentively to the lecture and diligently demonstrate that we’ve learned how to use condoms. Before we leave, they give us several free condoms and samples of spermicide. I decline as I’m already well stocked, thanks to Mom. Liz, too unwell to argue, just takes them and stuffs them into her purse.

“Are you ok?” I ask her back in the car.

“No, I’m dying,” she says matter-of-factly. Then she groans as she remembers something else. “There’s no way that I’m going to be able to work today.”

“There’s no way that your parents are going to allow you to work today. You look like death warmed over.”

She just groans again.

I pull the car into a spot close to the Crashdown and turn off the engine.
She sighs and climbs out of the car. I follow behind her and we enter the Crashdown through the back door. As I predicted, her parents immediately give Liz the day off and send her straight upstairs to bed.

Thankfully both Nancy and Jeff help out in the restaurant to cover Liz’s absence. As it was supposed to be the two of us and Agnes, AKA the world’s worst waitress, I would not have been a happy bunny if I’d been left on my own. It’s a busy day and the time passes quickly.

When I go on my break, Nancy suggests that I take it upstairs with Liz.

I find Liz curled up in her bed sleeping. She wakes up when I knock on the door and sits up in the bed.

“How are you feeling?” I ask. She looks a lot better already, there’s color in her cheeks again.

“Better,” she confirms. “Sorry about leaving you alone with Agnes.”

“That’s OK — your parents are pitching in, so it’s all good.” I plonk myself down on the bed beside her and she rests her head on my shoulder.

“And how are you feeling about the other stuff?” I ask.

“Stupid,” she admits. We’re silent for a while and I think she’s fallen asleep when she suddenly speaks again. “I can’t believe that I did that. In the back of a car of all places. It’s so not how I imagined it would happen.”

“How was it?” I ask.

“Not good. It was so quick and it hurt and it happened so fast that I wasn’t ready for it. And I knew it was a mistake so I kind of just froze.”

I look at her with concern, an unsettling feeling in the pit of my stomach. “He didn’t force you, did he?”

“No,” she’s quick to assure me.

“But he hurt you?”

“No, Max didn’t hurt me. He… he just didn’t know that I was a virgin so he wasn’t as gentle as he would have been. And I froze up — if I had been more relaxed, it probably would have been more enjoyable. But it wasn’t all bad Maria. The stuff we did before it was amazing. I could have kissed him forever. And he was really sweet afterwards too, I just freaked out. But I had an amazing, incredible time with him.”

“OK.” Well I’m glad that her first time wasn’t completely horrible even if it wasn’t ideal either.

I ask her if she’s hungry and she tells me that she’d love some ice-cream so I fetch a carton from the freezer and two spoons. We’re tucking into it when the door of the Parker’s apartment opens.

We hear Michael’s voice in the hallway. “You’re such a girl, Maxwell.”

Liz and I exchange glances — she looks terrified.

There’s a really gentle tap on the door and it opens slowly, Michael peeks in, then seeing that Liz is awake and eating ice-cream he pushes the door open completely and comes into the room. He’s holding his cellphone in his hand and wearing his uniform. We relax, realizing that Max isn’t with him, they were just talking on the phone.

He sits down on the edge of Liz’s bed. “Hey shortie, Mom says that you’re not feeling well.”

“Um, yeah. Tummy bug, I think. I’m actually feeling better already.”

“Good to hear. You need anything?”

She holds up the carton of ice-cream. “Got everything I need right here.”

He laughs at her and tousles her hair. Then he looks at me, “What about you Goldilocks? You haven’t been hit by any tummy bugs have you?”

I shake my head, “I’m fine.”

Michael stands up and stretches his arms. “OK, well I’m going over to Max’s place. He’s in a tizzy about some girl. If you want to watch one of my DVDs help yourself. I’ll be back in an hour or two, so call me if you need anything from the store.”

“Thanks,” Liz says with a small smile.

He leaves. Liz and I sit in silence until we hear the sound of the front door closing after him.

“What are you going to do about Max?” I ask Liz.

Her eyes are fixed on the ice cream carton and she doesn’t look up at me. I wait for an answer and eventually she shrugs.

“Liz, you have to talk to him. You heard what Michael said; he’s obviously worried about what happened last night.”

She still says nothing.

“And he needs to know the truth Liz. What if comes over here to see Michael one day and you’re here. You don’t want him to find out like that in front of Michael or your parents do you?”

Again, silence.

“Liz?” I prompt, a little angrily.

“You’re right,” she admits reluctantly. “I really can’t face him today though Maria.”

“You have to do it soon Liz.”

“I know. I will. Tomorrow, I promise. I’ll call him and arrange to meet up.”

“You have to be completely honest with him.”

She nods miserably, “I know.”

“And you have to be prepared from him to be angry with you Liz.”

A fat tear rolls down her cheek and she sniffs before wiping it away. “I know.”

***


Max

“Lucy Smith?”

Michael and Kyle both look blankly at me and shrug.

“Sorry Maxwell,” Michael says. “Don’t remember her and don’t know her.”

I slump down into my armchair, feeling dejected. I was really hoping that one of them would know who she is. Even if they didn’t remember her from high school I was sure that they’d know her now. I find it hard to believe that a girl as beautiful as Lucy has escaped the notice of this pair of Romeos. I tell them this.

“What does she look like?” Michael asks.

“She’s short, slim. Has long brown hair and really incredible eyes.”

“Really incredible eyes? Kyle laughs. “Have we met before Max? I’m Kyle, I don’t really notice girl’s eyes. We need something better, like...” Then he cups his hands in front of his chest to indicate breasts. Like, double J size breasts.

“I think we’d know that girl,” Michael says dryly.

Kyle brings his hands in closer to his chest, to much smaller double d’s.

I roll my eyes and place my hands on my chest to indicate roughly that Lucy’s breasts are small. But perfect.

“Sorry Man,” Kyle says with a shake of his head.

I turn to Michael. “Is there anyway you could look her up for me?”

Michael shakes his head. “Max, I’d love to help you, but I can’t just look up information like that without a good reason. It’s an invasion of privacy. Sorry.”

Kyle and I exchange amused grins. Seeing Michael Guerin — who was less than law-abiding a few years ago — as an upholder and enforcer of the law now, will never be not funny.

He just laughs along with us. “What about Isabel? She had files on everybody in our class.”

“She doesn’t remember her, either.”

As if she heard her name being mentioned, Isabel walks in the front door. “Hey guys,” she says cheerfully. Her eyes land on Michael and she scowls. “Shithead.”

“Princess,” he returns.

“It’s good to see that you two have grown up in the last few years,” I state glibly. Isabel glares at me and Michael smirks.

“What are you talking about?” Isabel asks, taking a seat on the couch beside me and helping herself to a beer.

“Lucy Smith,” I say.

She frowns for a moment, then realizes who I mean. “The girl from yesterday. You’re still on that?”

“I met up with her last night at a club and… we had a good time. At least I thought we did, but I screwed up and she left in a hurry. I didn’t get her number and I really want to talk to her and apologize.”

“What did you do?” Isabel asks.

“It doesn’t matter,” I say.

She looks to Kyle and Michael for an answer.

It’s Kyle who gives her what she wants. “Bad sex.” I’m going to kill him.

She looks at me in disapproval. “Max.”

“I was drunk,” I say. “Everybody’s bad at it when they’re drunk.”

“Not me,” Kyle and Michael chorus at once.

Yeah, thanks guys.

Isabel glares at Michael. “I wouldn’t be so sure about that if I were you.”

“That’s not what you told everybody,” he reminds her.

“OK, back to me,” I interject before they descend into a full scale argument. “I’d just like to find her, Isabel. I feel really bad for what happened and she seemed upset when she left.”

That statement obviously worries Isabel. “What happened exactly?”

I really don’t want to tell her this but I find myself telling her anyway. “We were drunk and we did something we probably wouldn’t have done if we were sober and I think she regretted it as soon as it was over because she ran off. I didn’t force her, Isabel, or anything like that, but she was upset and I just want to make sure that she’s OK and to apologize.”

Michael sits upright suddenly. “You know, if you’re saying that the last saw her she was in a distressed state, then that’s probably something I can look into.”

“Thank you, Michael.”

“I’m working tomorrow, I’ll see what I can find out then.”

***


Later, after Michael and Kyle have left, Isabel sits me down and questions me about what exactly happened last night with Lucy. It kind of makes me think that she should have done law instead of social care. I spill my guts. Actually, it’s quiet a relief to talk to her. Michael and Kyle were fine but they’re guys. And I’m a guy. I can be a bit more emotional with Isabel.

“So we were having an amazing time together. It was one of the best nights I’ve had with a girl. It was fun, it was sexy, it was real. There was no pretence. None of that stuff you do when you’re trying to impress somebody. We were just ourselves. We went out for some air, to cool off. We were both a little drunk. Not off our faces but happy, you know? So we’re out in the car park and she trips and I catch her. Next thing you know we’re making out. So we got in the back of my car and I really only intended it to be for making out. But one thing led to another and…”

“And you had sex in the back of Mom’s car. Ew.”

“Thanks. The thing is that as soon as it was over she pushed me away. She couldn’t get out of the car fast enough. I tried to chase after her.”

“But it’s hard to run with your pants around your ankle?” Isabel grins.

I nod ashamedly. “She was gone by the time I got into the club.”

“How did you meet up with her?”

I tell her the whole story of meeting Lucy at the book store and when I’m finished, Isabel considers it for a while before giving me her opinion. “Max, she’s probably just really embarrassed about the whole thing. It sounds to me like she had a massive crush on you in high school and obviously you didn’t even know she was alive back then. Now all of a sudden you’re paying her all this attention. It’s probably her dream come true. And the whole situation made her do something that’s really uncharacteristic. My guess is that she’s totally mortified by her behavior and probably thinks that you think she’s a slut. You didn’t do anything wrong. I mean, it wasn’t the classiest move you’ve ever made but it’s not something you should be beating yourself up over.”

I let her words sink in, they make me feel better. “So do you think that I should let her come to me or should I try and track her down?”

“Yes.”

“Which?”

“Both, find out who she is if you can. Then maybe call her or send her flowers. Let her know that you’re thinking about her and then let her come to you.”

Talking to Isabel really helped and makes me feel a tad better about the situation. She thinks that if I find the yearbook that she might be able to recognize Lucy. What Michael said about Isabel having files on all our classmates wasn’t true, but she did have a filo-fax stuffed with information about pretty much everybody. Isabel was a committee slut in high school. And come to think of it, that hasn’t changed.

So later that evening as Mom prepares dinner and Isabel has a secret phone conversation with her secret boyfriend, I head out into the garage to go through my boxes.

Half an hour later and still no yearbook, Isabel appears behind me causing me to jump and squeal in a very unmanly way. She laughs and hands me the phone. “It’s for you. It’s a girl.”

She looks like she wants to hang around but I hold the phone to my chest and eyeball her until her she huffs and goes back inside.

“Hello.”

Hi Max, it’s Lucy. I remembered your dad is Philip Evans so I looked him up in the phonebook. I hope you don’t mind me calling you at home.

“No, of course not. I’m delighted you called; I’ve been trying to figure out how to get in touch with you all day. I want to apologize-“

She cuts me off, “Please don’t apologize Max. You honestly have nothing to apologize for. I’m the one who’s sorry.”

It’s my turn to cut her off. “You shouldn’t be. Lucy, last night was great. I had an amazing time with you. I think we’re both a little embarrassed that we lost control the way we did.”

“I shouldn’t have run off. Please don’t think you did anything wrong because you didn’t Max. It was all me.”

It’s such a relief to hear her say that. “Can I see you again? Soon? I really want to take you out properly.”

She hesitates for a moment. “Can we meet up tomorrow?”

“I’d love that. I’ll book a table. Mom and Dad were at a restaurant last night and they were raving about it today. I can book a table there.”

Again she seems hesitant. “Don’t book a table. Let’s just meet up so we can talk. There’s a park opposite the library, how about we meet there after you’ve finished work?”

“Ok, that sounds good.” An idea begins to form in my mind. “Let’s say six o’clock. It’s my first day, so I don’t want to rush out the door at five.”

She’s happy with that arrangement so we exchange goodbyes and hang up.

“Isabel,” I say.

She appears at the door of the garage instantly, looking a little sheepish but not very. “Yes?”

“I need your help.”

***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Sun Nov 21, 2010 10:36 am, edited 3 times in total.

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In which Liz sinks deeper into the lie

Postby nibbles2 » Sat Apr 04, 2009 1:05 pm

Rowedog Well my intention would be for readers to see both points of view and not hate either character for their actions, no matter how dumb they may be. So, score.

keepsmiling7 Thank you.

DaleStateShorty Isabel’s secret boyfriend, as revealed in chapter three, is Jesse. And he’s not really a secret, she just isn’t ready for her parents to know yet.

Mary Mary I’m really curious as to why everybody is worried about Michael’s reaction. Liz has parents. Max has parents. And a sister. They’ll all have reactions too. Why just Michael?

Spacegirl23 Yeah, I think Maria’s over protectiveness stemmed from the fact that she knew how obsessed Liz is with Max. And she understands what Liz is feeling because she has been crushing on Michael as hard and as long as Liz has on Michael.

Begonia9508 Thanks.

Emz80m Thank you

Natalie36 Obviously I’m not going to answer that yet.

truluv Thank you.

April I don’t get why people use bananas when carrots bear a much closer resemblance.

Sarammlover Yes, alcohol is evil. Liz and Max would never have did what they did if they had been sober. Or even less drunk.

destinyc maybe this meeting won’t be as painful as you think

Kay_b Not telling.

DreamerLaure I don’t think that Max is a jerk. He was drunk and got carried away and truly, 100% believed that ‘Lucy’ wanted it to happen to. Which she did until it was too late. But I think you’ll how great Max is in this part.

TrudyGill23 Thank you.

Alien_Friend Isabel and Maria are both very smart girls. Max and Liz would do well to heed their advice.

Tequathisy Exactly.

Wench on a leash Yeah….




. _____ .

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. _____ .




Some lines taken from the episode ‘Blood Brother’.

Crush – 5

Max

I’m not sure that I made a great impression on my first day of my new job.

I spent more time thinking about my date this evening with Lucy than I did thinking about what I was supposed to be doing during the day.

Isabel is a fantastic help, she does most of the work for tonight for me but I have to field about a dozen calls from her as she runs one thing and then another past me for my approval. In return I almost out her and her new relationship to dad when he introduced me to his new associate Jesse Rameriez and I did that thing, “Oh, yoooou’re Jesse,” and nearly made some kind of smart remark but Jesse had a deer-caught-in-headlines stare and I managed to avoid saying something that got me killed. I think (hope) that Dad believed me when I said that I just recognized the name because Dad talks about him a lot.

By five pm I’m literally on the edge of my seat, my leg hopping as I wait for other people to start heading for the exits so I can make my escape.

“Max,” my father calls and beckons me into his office. “How did you find your first day?”

“Great, it was good. Everybody’s lovely and it’s all great. I enjoyed it.” It’s not exactly a lie, everybody is lovely but I can’t wait to get out of here.

My dad gives me a stern look, but his eyes are sparkling with amusement. “It’s a good thing that you’re the boss’s son. Nobody else would get away with doing so little work on their first day.”

I hang my head sheepishly, “Sorry… I…”

“She must be some girl.”

Thank you Isabel. “She’s great.”

My dad laughs. “Do you need money for dinner or anything?”

“Thanks, I have it covered. I’m really sorry Dad, I promise I’ll be better tomorrow. It’s just that she is a special girl and I screwed up a little on Saturday night and it’s important that tonight goes well or it might be over before it even begins.”

“Don’t worry Max. Have fun tonight and I’ll see you in the morning.”

“Thanks, Dad.”

After leaving my dad’s office, I visit the rest room where I change out of my work clothes and into a more casual pair of jeans and a green shirt that Isabel picked out because it ‘really brings out my eyes’.

Just as I’m finishing applying gel to my hair, Isabel texts to say that she’s down stairs. I bump into Jesse at the stairs and we walk down together. He seems like a good guy but I’ll reserve judgment until I’ve had a chance to get to know him better and have Michael run a background check on him.

Isabel meets us in the lobby with a picnic basket on her arm. She lights up when she sees Jesse and he smiles just as brightly. Whatever is between them is more than just the ‘casual thing’ that Isabel tried to pass it off as. I think about my date with Lucy. If I can make her smile just by showing up, then it’s a good sign.

Thankfully, despite Isabel’s cajoling, Jesse doesn’t want to hide in the bushes to spy on me and my date, and instead whisks Isabel off with the promise of cooking her dinner. It means I can relax when I meet Lucy and not have to worry about Isabel watching over us.

Unless she told Jesse to say that.

***


I keep a watchful eye out for Isabel in the park but see no sign of her anywhere. Though she could be leading a marching band right under my nose when Lucy enters the park and I wouldn’t notice.

Lucy looks around nervously and spots me. I wait with baited breath.

She smiles that beautiful smile of hers and it warms my insides. I smile back and watch as she crosses the small park to where I’m waiting. She’s wearing a really pretty floral summer dress and her hair is loose and wavy.

She looks nervous but happy to see me. Kind of how I feel, actually.

“Hi,” she says softly, her gaze on the ground. She looks up at me shyly and then back down. She doesn’t know what it does to me when she looks at me like that.

“Hi Lucy, you look beautiful.”

Lucy blushes and smiles again. Then she turns serious and clears her throat. “We have to talk. Max, about Saturday night—”

I cut her off before she can continue. I’ve been working on what I should say all day. Isabel gave me notes but right now, the clever little phrases I memorized elude me. I just say what comes to me. “Lucy, Saturday night was great. Saturday was great actually. I think you’re amazing. I really loved meeting you and getting to know you. I’m not the type of guy who normally drags girls into the back of his car when he’s only known them for a few hours and I know that you’re not that type of girl. I think we both feel that there’s a connection between us and that they’re could be something special, really special. At least, that’s what I feel and I hope you feel that too.”

“I do,” she tells me earnestly. “But-”

“Then let’s just put what happened down to hormones and drink. Mostly drink. Let’s not beat ourselves up over it. Let’s start over. Let’s just get to know each other properly.”

“Max, that’s all I want,” she tells me. “That’s all I wanted to do when I waved at you in the café. I really didn’t mean for what happened to happen.”

Boy, she’s really beating herself up about it. Isabel told me to expect it, she guessed that Lucy would be really embarrassed about it. She also told me to let Lucy know that I don’t think any less of her because she had sex with me on our first date. So I try to reassure Lucy. “We all do out of character things when we’re drunk. I feel horrible about it because I know that you couldn’t have enjoyed it as much as you would have if we had done it right. I really regret that, Lucy, because you’re a special girl and I really think you deserve to be treated special.”

“Thank you Max, but you don’t have to feel bad about it.”

“You don’t either.”

She gives me a small smile.

“So let’s put it behind us and have a nice evening getting to know each other. I want to make it up to you and right here…,” I gesture at the basket. “is how I’m going to do that.”

She glances at the basket on the bench beside me. “What’s that?”

“Romance in a basket.”

She tries not to laugh but fails and I laugh too.

“My sister packed it for me. And that’s what she told me is in it. And Isabel knows romance. Interested?”

She nibbles her lip and then nods. “Absolutely.”

“Great, I was going to suggest we have it here, but I’m a little paranoid that Isabel could be spying on us so I have an alternative in mind. Do you think you can trust yourself in a car alone with me? Or we could stay here and let Isabel have her fun.”

My joke falls flat and Lucy looks uncomfortable.

She glances around nervously. “If you promise to keep your hands where I can see them at all times, then I’d like to try the alternative.”

It takes me a second to realize that she’s joking. I smile and she smiles back. So lifting the basket with one hand and taking her hand in my other, I lead her to my car.

***


Liz

‘Romance in a basket’ may sound a little cheesy, but it actually works. Isabel should market it. If she could just find a guy as gorgeous, kind, sweet, caring, smart and sexy as Max to go along with each basket she’d make a killing.

Or maybe, the romance is all Max and the basket is superfluous.

He brought me out to a spot by the quarry lake out in the desert. By day, it’s a very dreary, grey place that’s as far from romance as your average morgue. But it’s transformed in the evening. The setting sun turns the grey rocks into beautiful shades of orange and the water reflects the beautiful sky and its multitude of colors. There’s a sprinkling of stars shining down on us.

Isabel included five or six candles in the basket. Helpfully some of them are the kind that Amy Deluca sells in her shop — they perform the dual role of giving light and producing a scent which is pleasant to humans but keeps the bugs away. Max spreads a blanket on the small patch of ground that’s made from earth and not rocks and sets the candles up on the rocks around us.

We have a delicious meal, listen to soft rock music on a battery powered radio and chat as the sun goes down and the stars come out.

Max is the perfect gentleman. He doesn’t lay a hand on me. Actually, not true, he keeps touching me in fact. Every so often he brushes against my arm, or our hands meet as we reach for the same thing, or he brushes a strand of hair away from my face.

Everytime he touches me, it’s like being hit with a bolt of electricity. The good kind of electricity – the kind that makes you feel warm and alive and excited and tingly. Not the kind that kills you.

Once we’ve finished eating, Max clears away the picnic stuff and we lay out on the blanket. He wraps an arm around me and pulls me close to him so that I’m flush against his body and my heading is resting on his shoulder. I place my hand flat against his chest and slowly and gently rub it over his chest and down his stomach. He has a lock of my hair tangled around his fingers and runs his hand lazily up and down my arm.

Have you ever had a moment when you're with the one person in the world you want to be with and the song that just describes your entire soul happens to come on, and then the person that you want to be with happens to love the same song and suddenly you realize you're listening to it together? And that no matter how crazy your life has gotten there's this one moment, this perfect moment, where you could just say that no matter what happens, nothing can take this moment away from me.

I know that I should have to tell him the truth but if I had, then I’d never have experienced this moment.

“This is one of those perfect moments,” Max says suddenly. “You know, when everything sucks and nothing’s going your way? And you close your eyes and try to calm down so you picture yourself in your happy place, doing something wonderful and just the memory of it makes everything else seem somehow better.”

Oh my God, we’re so perfect for each other! Why does a stupid thing like age matter when everything else is so right? A guy my age could never understand me the way Max does, or treat me the way he does or make me feel the way he does. And apparently, no girl Max’s ages does any of that for him either.

Age is just a number. I’m mature and smart and responsible. I’m perfectly capable of having a relationship with Max so why should the fact that I’m sixteen stop that? I’ll be seventeen in a few months. Then it will be perfectly legal for me to have a relationship with Max in New Mexico. Will I suddenly be more mature and more ready for a relationship the day I turn seventeen than I am right now?

It’s just an arbitrary number anyway. If we were in Oklahoma, then we could be having sex right now and it would be completely legal. If I was in South Carolina then it would have been legal since I was fourteen.

So why do some old guys in an office wherever get to choose when I can and can’t have sex? Why do the girls in Oklahoma and several other states get to do it at sixteen but I have to wait until I’m seventeen? Even though I’m probably more mature than most other girls my age?

Why should some arbitrary number that will mean nothing in a few months prevent Max and me from being happy?

I know Max would feel the same as me.

I want to tell him, I know that I should. But I also know what kind of guy Max is. He’s training to be a lawyer. He’s always obeyed the rules. He would end our relationship immediately even though he feels the same way as me because it would be the right thing to do.

So I keep quiet, for now. Just until he’s had a chance to get to know the real me. Once the time is right, I’ll come clean and tell him who I really am. I just hope that he can get past my deception and see that if I hadn’t told him that I was Lucy Smith then he would never have gotten to the real me and we’d never have had the chance to connect the way he have or never shared this perfect moment with each other.

We’ve been lying in silence, just soaking up the feeling of right now for a while when Max suddenly adjusts his position so that he can look down at my face. “You know something that’s strange?” He asks. “I feel like I’ve known you my whole life and that I know you better than anybody else in the world. But I hardly know you at all.”

“What do you want to know?” I ask. This makes me nervous because in all probability I’m going to have to lie to him again and I really don’t want to do that anymore.

“Everything,” he says with a smile.

“That’s a lot of information.”

“Then tell me one thing and I’ll tell you one thing.”

I consider that, the chance of being able to ask Max anything I want is just way too good an opportunity to pass up. “Ok, what do you want to know?”

He thinks about what he’s going to ask for a long time and even opens his mouth to say something once or twice before quickly changing his mind.

I look at my watch and sigh with mock impatience. He tickles my side and I laugh against his chest.

“Ok,” he says at last. “What did you think of me in high school?”

That’s an easy question for me to answer, I can tell him how I felt without having to lie, I just have to fudge the details a little. But it’s also a difficult question to answer because those feelings were so intense and admitting them to Max is way embarrassing.

I clear my throat and lick my lips and try to formulate my response. “You were like this untouchable god in high school. You had this aura about you that elevated you above all the other guys. It wasn’t just because you were the best looking, though. It was because you had something special about you. You carried yourself differently. You were one of them, but not. You were normal, but not. You had this mysterious air about you but I could never figure out why. I just wanted to talk to you, get to know you, find out what was going on inside your head.”

“So why didn’t you ever talk to me?” he asks gently.

“Because you didn’t ever see me and I just wasn’t brave enough to put myself out there and make you see me.”

“I wish you had, I feel like I missed out by not knowing you back then. Or, I wish I had been smart enough to look beyond the obvious and see you and how special you were. How special you are.”

My heart leaps to hear him say that. He’ll understand why I had to do this, I know he will.

“So, your turn,” he says with a wiggle of his eyebrows. “Have you a question for me?”

Have I? I have thousands. But which one do I want to know first? What’s the one thing I’ve always wanted to know about Max? The one thing above all others. There’s so many. Brain going into overload.

“Tick, tick, tick, tick,” Max teases.

“OK, OK. I have it.” The one thing I have never, ever been able to work out about Max. “Why are you and Michael Guerin such good friends? You have nothing in common with him? He’s such an immature Neanderthal and you’re the opposite.”

Max laughs. “You’re being very harsh on Michael. He’s a great guy and a great friend. He’s fun, he’s very loyal, he’s brutally honest. I think that’s what I like about him the most, with Michael he doesn’t pretend to be anything that he’s not. But there’s two sides to Michael, there’s public Michael and private Michael. I know that sounds like a contradiction, to say that he has two sides and to say that he doesn’t pretend to be what he’s not. But that’s Michael for you, impossible to define. Once you get to know him he’s great.”

Of course, I do know Michael and while I agree that deep down he’s a great guy, I still don’t see why Max would want to be his friend. When Michael came home from Europe all he talked about was the chicks and the beer. Max talked about literature and culture and the arts and architecture and politics.

“But what do have in common? Like when you were in Europe and you wanted to see all the museums and the art galleries and the historical sites and Michael just wanted to go the local bars to score hot chicks?”

Max laughs again. “Now you’re being very kind to me. Believe me, I spent my fair share of time in local bars trying to score hot chicks. You know, in a totally gentlemanly, chivalrous kind of way.”

I slap him playfully and he pretends to be hurt, clutching his injury and moaning exaggeratedly.

“Ok, I’ll tell you something that will maybe change your mind about Michael. When we were in high school, we always planned to travel down route sixty-six. The reason we went to Europe instead was because of Michael’s favorite book. Do you know what his favorite book is?”

I do of course, but I play dumb.

“Ulysses, by James Joyce. He loves it; he can quote whole passages from it. Have you read it? You’re an English Lit major, so you must know it?”

I have tried to read Ulysses on several different occasions. Like Max said, it’s Michael’s favorite book and I refuse to allow Michael to have a favorite book that I can’t even read. But it’s impossible to read, it’s so weird.

“Are you sure that he’s really read it and he hasn’t just memorized the passages to impress girls?”

“Funnily enough, I’ve never seen him using that line to impress girls,” Max laughs. “Anyway, the book is based on a day in the life of this guy called something Bloom. He spends the day going around Dublin city, doing all these different things. He eats a disgusting breakfast and he goes swimming in a ‘snot-green’ sea. Stuff like that. Anyway, every year there’s a festival in Dublin where they dress up in the clothing of the period and eat the disgusting breakfast and go swimming in the sea. Anyway, Michael has secretly wanted to go to it for years. And that’s why we went to Europe.”

No way. Huh, you learn something every day. “Please, please tell me you have pictures of Michael in clothes from nineteen-oh-four.”

Max smiles in an ‘I’m-not-telling-you-but-I-do’ way.

“What would I have to do to see them?”

“Ah, you see Michael and I have a security clause. I’d be happy to show you, if you could somehow convince him to not show anybody what he has on me.”

“Which is?”

He shakes his head. “Sorry, you’ve already asked your question.”

“Damn.”

We both laugh and snuggle closer.

“Can I ask you a question that’s sort of a continuity of my first question?” This is an important question, I think it has a lot of relevance to our situation.

“Sure.”

“In senior year, when Michael dumped Isabel, it was pretty brutal and so cruel and yet it didn’t seem to affect your friendship at all. Didn’t it bother you that he did what he did?”

Max sighs, my ear is pressed against his chest and I can feel his sigh deep within him. “I felt bad for Isabel, but I agreed with Michael at the time.”

I sit up and look at him in surprise. “He dumped her two days before prom. The prom that she spent the entire year organizing. And he took the girl who won prom queen when everybody thought it was going to be Isabel. And none of that bothered you?”

“You don’t remember what Isabel was like that year? She was a nightmare. Suzanne won prom queen because everybody felt so sorry for her after the way Isabel went off on her that day she found out that Suzanne was going to be wearing the same dress as Isabel. It’s why Michael broke up with her and took Suzanne instead. I totally agreed with Michael. Though don’t tell Isabel I said that.”

“So you really weren’t pissed that he did that to Isabel? She’s your sister.”

“Exactly, I was living with her at the time. She was a total nightmare. The power went to her head. Nobody should ever be Student body president, chair of the prom committee, yearbook editor and all the other things she was head of at the same time. Way too much power for one person, it really does corrupt.”

He’s not really telling me what I need to know. But I can’t really ask him what I need to know. “So even though Michael dated your sister and it ended really badly, it didn’t affect your friendship?”

“Not really, I couldn’t bring him around to out house for a while after but apart from that, no.”

“Do you think Michael would be as cool if you were dating his sister?”

“I don’t know. It’s a completely different situation. And never going to happen,” he lifts my hand to his lips and kisses my knuckles, “because, I’m smitten with somebody else.”

He’s so sweet. Who cares about the rest of it? We’re meant to be together — the age thing and the Michael issue and all the other stuff doesn’t matter. We can get past all that.

When something is this right, you can overcome anything.

Unfortunately, our evening has to end. We both have to work early in the morning so we can’t stay in our little bubble of perfection. We have to return to reality.

Max insists on driving me home so I give him directions to Maria’s house. He pulls up outside and cuts the engine. “So here you are, safe and unmolested.”

“What a shame,” I tell him with a flirty smile. I lean in and he meets me. Our lips meet. His kiss is just like him, sweet and gentle and perfect.

“I’m meeting up with the guys tomorrow night, why don’t you come out with me and meet them?” Max asks when we pull apart.

Evade, evade. “I’d love to but I can’t tomorrow night, I promised my friend that I’d do something with her. She’s a little pissed at me for ditching her at the club to spend the night with you.”

“Oops.”

“Not your fault.”

“How about later in the week? My parents are in Albuquerque on business on Thursday and Friday. I’m pretty sure that Isabel will take advantage of that to spend the night with her boyfriend. Would you be interested in coming over and having me cook for you?”

“I would be extremely interested.”

“Great. Note to self, learn to cook.” Max smiles at me again. God, I love his smile. “And will it be another hands-off date?”

“No, definitely a hands-on date.” I kiss him one more time and climb out of the car and walk up the path and head around the back of the house so that Max doesn’t have to see me knock to gain access to what’s supposedly my own home.

I tap on Maria’s window and after a loud scream, she appears at the window brandishing a shoe and looking flustered. When she sees it’s me, she drops the weapon and opens the window to let me.

She’s going to kill me.

But after tonight, I can face a thousand Maria Deluca’s out to kill me and they couldn’t touch me.

***

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nibbles2
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In which the plot thickens

Postby nibbles2 » Tue Apr 14, 2009 12:24 pm

Once again, thank you all for reading.

Alien_Friend Thank you. I’m glad that you can see things from Liz’s point of view. I never wanted to make her out to be a monster.

destinyc Thanks

Rowedog I think Liz is both dreading and anticipating telling Max the truth too.

Natalie36 Yep.

TrudyGill23 Thanks for reading.

wench on a leash I don’t think he should blame Max either.

Mary Mary I think it’s a generalisation to say that all guys are protective of their little sisters. Some are and some aren’t. In my own experience, I’ve never met a guy who acts in the clichéd overprotective big brother role Michael is usually written in fanfics. The guys I know will look out for their sisters, but they also look out for their friends.

DaleStateShorty Isabel told Max that she was seeing Jesse in the second chapter. Alex is the same age as Maria and Liz so it’s unlikely that she would be dating him.

Blondie Thanks

Emz80m Thanks for reading.

Begonia9508 Why would she pass the blame onto Maria?

RiceKrispy LOL. Sixteen years really think they know everything.

Kay_b I like the pun. The title has a couple of meanings and that is one of them.

Tequathisy Exactly, it started out as a stupid mistake and now it’s become a calculated lie. Max might have got over the mistake but the lie will be a lot more difficult.

April It’s strange to think that fourteen year olds in some state are allowed to have sex. It gives Liz some of the justification she needs to convince herself that what she’s doing isn’t wrong.

spacegirl23 Yeah, Max is totally dreamy in this fic. He’s such a good guy, I hate putting him through this.

keepsmiling7 Thanks

sarammlover Thank you.

Tamashii Liz is being childish. And selfish. She’s sixteen, that’s what they’re like.


Crush - 6

Liz

Remember when you were a kid and that feeling you got when you woke up on Christmas morning or on your birthday? Remember that knot of excitement in your belly?

That’s how I feel when I wake up the morning after my amazing date with Max.

I’m dating Max Evans.

OK, so it’s not exactly official, and he doesn’t exactly know who I really am yet, and we can’t tell anybody, and Maria’s mad at me. But I don’t care.

Max likes me, he wants to spend time with me and he’s attracted to me. That’s all I need to know, the rest is unimportant. We can overcome the rest, I know we can. All that’s important is that Max feels for me the same way that I feel for him. Because if he does, then he’ll see that nothing else matters.

I jump out of bed and skip into the shower. The butterflies are dancing like crazy in my stomach. I can’t wait for my next date with Max. I can’t wait to feel his lips on mine again and to have his hands on my body. I can’t wait to make love to him. We’ll do it properly this time - In a bed with candles lighting all around us and music playing softly. I’ll be ready this time and won’t freeze up like I did the first time. I’m so excited I start singing. I really do feel like a kid at Christmas.

When I walk into the kitchen after my shower, Dad is making an omelet and Michael is sitting at the table clutching his head in pain.

“Michael, are you OK?” I ask.

“Are my ears bleeding?” he asks.

In alarm I take his head in my hands and examine both ears. “No, what’s wrong?”

“I was lying in bed and all of a sudden I heard the most awful sound coming from the other side of the wall. It was like the sounds of cats being drowned. Cats with really bad singing voices. It was horrible.”

“Ass,” I punch his arm and move away to pour myself some juice.

My dad chuckles and Michael roars with laughter. Seriously, how can he and Max be such good friends? Michael is a child.

I sit down at the table and help myself to a piece of toast and shoot glares at Michael who is still laughing to himself as he eats his breakfast.

It’s so annoying to think that he’s allowed to do whatever he likes just because he’s twenty-two while I can’t do anything because I’m sixteen. He’s so juvenile and immature yet he’s regarded as an adult. While I, who am mature and responsible and grown-up am treated like a child. It’s unfair.

He gobbles down his breakfast and I wrinkle my nose in disgust at his appalling manners. I wonder, not for the first time, what it is that Maria sees in him.

Maria.

She’s not happy with me. When I got to her house last night she was waiting with ice cream and a box of tissues. I told her about my evening but instead of being happy for me she yelled at me. I thought that Maria of all people, the girl who has been hopelessly in love with my brother all these years would understand why I’m grasping this chance to be with Max with both hands.

If anything, it’s through watching Maria that I’ve come to the decision to continue things with Max. I’ve seen the way she adores him and gets nothing in return. She hangs around hoping for crumbs of Michael’s attention as he hops from one girl’s bed to another. I see how she’s completely powerless to capture his attention, to fight for him. I see that no matter how she dresses, or behaves or how grown-up she tries to be she will never be more than a little sister type to Michael.

I can’t let myself suffer the same fate. Not when I have the chance to be with Max and to make him see the real me. I have to take this opportunity. I have to make it happen myself, now, or it will never ever happen.

Why can’t Maria just understand that?

I want to go shopping this morning to get more ‘grown-up’ clothes and while normally I’d never consider going shopping without Maria, today I think I’ll go alone. I love Maria and I don’t want to get in an argument with her. Unfortunately, I think that an argument is inevitable. Maria doesn’t approve of my decision and I’m not going to let her dissuade me.

After breakfast, I grab my things and head into town. First I visit the store that Maria took me to on Saturday. It’s funny, last week I would never have gone into that store alone. I would have felt so intimidated and out of place. Now I stroll in, return the bitchy look the sales assistant throws in my direction and browse the racks.

I’m looking for something grown-up and sexy, something that will blow Max Evans away and make him want to ravish me. But I don’t want to cross the line and get something slutty. I don’t think that Max is the type of guy who’s into the trampy look.

I find a couple of things to try on including a really sexy black satin corset top. I’ve always wanted a corset top and never had the guts to buy one before. I try it on with a really tight pair of jeans similar to a pair that Maria has and that I’ve wanted to borrow and never did.

The outfit is amazing and really transforms me from innocent looking teenager to sexy vixen. Combine with good hair and my makeup and I will look hot. I put them aside to buy and try on my other selection. The other items make me look like a prostitute so they go straight back on the rack.

After choosing my outfit, I visit a couple of shoe stores until I find a gorgeous pair of black patent stilettos with a four inch heel. I make a mental note to practice walking in them before my date. The last thing I want is to fall on my ass while I’m trying to be seductive.

My last stop is Victoria’s Secret. Again, this is the type of store that I’ve never gone into alone. I’ll tell you a secret. I’ve never worn a thong before or any kind of underwear that could be remotely considered racy. My newfound confidence deserts me for a minute and I walk around nervously trying to act nonchalant. Eventually I realize that I’m being stupid and I walk up to a rack of lacy push up bras and start rifling through them. At first I go for the safe colors that I normally chose – white, pink, black. Then I decide to be bold and pick red. I think that a hint of red peaking out from under my black corset will look really hot.

Satisfied with my purchases, I stroll through the mall imagining Max’s reaction when I turn up on Friday night. In my imagination he takes one look at me, whips me into his arms and carries me to his bed. It’s covered in silk sheets and white rose petals, hundreds of candles light the room. He lays me down on the bed and stands up. Then, slowly he begins to undress me, kissing every inch of my body as he –

“Hi Liz.”

I jump and clutch my chest. “Isabel, hi, how are you?”

She laughs “Are you ok?”

“Yeah, I was miles away.”

“Clearly. So how are you doing? Are you enjoying the summer?”

I nod my head, “Yeah, it’s great.” I glance around nervously just in case Max is with her but it looks like she’s alone. We chat about our plans for the summer. She tells me how she’s decided to volunteer at a children’s home and how rewarding it has been so far.

I’ve always really liked Isabel. She was so nice to me when she was going out with Michael and she has continued to be nice to me even though she and Michael are only on insult-trading terms now.

Maria, of course, hates her.

Isabel doesn’t treat me like a kid, which I like. And normally I enjoy talking to her but today I can’t relax. Even though I know Max is most likely at work I’m nervous that he’ll pop up beside her somewhere. Or that she did spy on us last night and is about to say something that will blow my cover.

“I have to go,” I interrupt her. “I have to be at work soon. It was nice talking to you, Isabel.” I give her a wave and hurry away.

Back at home, I change into my uniform and head downstairs. Maria has been working since ten so I’m on my guard for her. Thankfully it’s lunchtime now, so it will be really busy and we won’t be able to talk. With a little luck, the rush will continue until Maria’s shift ends and then I won’t have to talk to her at all.

God, I feel horrible for thinking this way about my best friend.

Maria is coming out of the stockroom carrying a box of napkins when I reach the bottom of the stairs. “Hi.”

“Hi Maria, what’s it like out there?”

She shrugs, “Getting busy.”

“OK.”

She steps around me and heads out into the diner but pauses in the doorway, she steps back and lets it swing closed. I can tell that she’s debating something with herself. After a moment she turns around to face me. “Max is out there.”

I hurry over to the door and look out the small glass window. Sure enough, Max is sitting at a booth reading a menu.

Shit.

My dad comes out of the kitchen and sees us standing at the door. “Girls, although it feels like it sometimes, I don’t actually pay you to stand around and gossip.” He stops and gives me a strange look. “Lizzie, are you ok?”

I glance at Maria guiltily before I look back at my dad. “I don’t feel well,” I say.

Beside me, I can feel Maria bristle but she doesn’t say anything.

Dad puts a hand to my forehead. “Is it the same thing as you had on Sunday?”

I shrug.

“Ok, straight up to bed young lady. I’ll call your Mom and have her come home.”

“Thanks,” I mumble, feeling like a total jerk. I look at Maria who is obviously not happy about this. “Sorry.”

***



Michael

“I have a problem,” Max says when I slide into the seat opposite him.

“She didn’t show? She didn’t like Isabel’s romantic picnic plan? She’s dog ugly in daylight?”

He smiles smugly, “She showed, she loved the picnic idea and she’s very beautiful.”

“So then what’s the problem?”

He slides a folded piece of paper across the table to me. I read it and laugh. “Max, if you were dumb enough to park illegally then you’ll just have to bear the consequences and pay the fine.”

“What’s the point in having you as a friend if you can’t make a parking ticket go away?” he asks, with a disappointed shake of his head.

“Sorry, but I don’t do favors for lawyers.”

“Amen,” Kyle proclaims as he slides into the booth beside Max. “Well?”

Max rolls his eyes. “We had a lovely time and we’re seeing each other again later in the week.”

“And was there an improvement in performance?” Kyle asks, wiggling his eyebrows.

“I’m not talking about that with you guys anymore,” Max says, his cheeks a lovely shade of bright red.

“That’s a no then,” I tease.

Max is glaring at me now, but he remains tight-lipped.

Kyle slaps his shoulder sympathetically. “Wow, this is embarrassing, Max. But rest assured, Michael and I are experts in the field and we’ll give you all the advice and support that we can.”

“Although it’s going to be difficult for us as neither of us has experienced this particular problem,” I add.

“Shut up. We didn’t have sex,” Max hisses.

Ha, I knew we’d crack him.

“We just took the time to talk and get to know each other,” he continues. “Assholes. I’m not talking about this with you guys anymore. In fact I’m just not talking to you anymore.”

Kyle and I laugh and Max grins at us.

“Man, I’ve been craving a Sigourney Weaver for over a year,” Max announces and looks around the diner for a waitress.

I saw Agnes outside puffing on a cigarette when I arrived; Liz is nowhere in sight and Maria’s behind the counter taking an order from a guy there. Usually Maria is pretty quick to come over and take my order but for some reason she’s acting like we’re not here. Eventually I snag her as she’s rushing past to drop off a tray of drinks.

“What’s up with the slow service here today?” I ask her. I’m teasing but she looks uncomfortable, shifting from foot to foot like she can’t wait to get away.

“Sorry, it’s pretty busy and I’m on with Agnes so…” she trails off and looks around.

“Where’s Liz?”

“She’s not feeling well again, can I take your order?”

We tell her what we want and she rushes off as soon as we’re finished. Odd, she’s usually full of conversation.

I turn back to Max, serious now. “So she was OK? She wasn’t upset about what happened between you at the club?”

“Yeah, she says that she was just drunk and embarrassed and got a little freaked out.”

“Great.” It’s a relief, because it’s so easy for things to get distorted and blown out of proportion. I’ve seen it at work once or twice where a guy has too much to drink and gets a little aggressive with a girl and she ends up reporting him to us. I’d hate to have seen something like that happen to Max. “I couldn’t find her, by the way.”

“What?”

“You asked me to do a check on her, but I couldn’t find any Lucy Smith.”

He shrugs. “Weird. She lives on Howard Street… uh, can’t remember the number.”

Maria has just come back to our table to deliver our drinks and she almost drops the tray but catches it just in time.

“Hey, you live on Howard Street,” I remember. “Do you know a girl called Lucy Smith?”

“Uh…” she looks at Max and looks away quickly. “Um... Yeah. Kind of.”

Max gives her a weird look. “You’re Maria,” he exclaims.

“That’s what it says on her name badge,” Kyle points out.

“No, I mean. I knew you when you were a kid. You hung out with Mike’s sister. But I thought you were younger. I’m Max Evans.”

She nods, “Yeah, I remember. I’ll be back with your food.”

“That’s my future sister,” Kyle says suddenly. “My dad’s dating her mom. They were away for the weekend and since he got back he’s been acting very sappy and like… well, Max.”

“Hey,” Max protests. He turns to me. “I’d forgotten about her, she’s the one who used to have a crush on you.”

Kyle chuckles in amusement then gets serious. “I suppose as her future big brother I should be warning you to treat her right.”

I ignore him as I spot my dad at the hatch, helping out in the kitchen so I tell the guys I’ll be back in a minute and head back to him.

“Hey dad, Maria said Liz isn’t feeling well.”

“Yeah, she was looking really pale when she came down to start her shift and she wanted to go back to bed.”

“She must really be sick if she doesn’t want to work,” I comment. “Is it the same thing as she had on Sunday?”

“I don’t know. I couldn’t go up to her because we’re too busy but I called your Mom and she’s just got home. I’m sure she’ll come down and tell us soon.”

“Cool. Let me know what she says.”

“Will do.”

I leave the kitchen and almost run into Maria carrying a large stack of dirty dishes. I grab a handful of plates before they slide to the floor and follow her into the wash-up area.

“Thanks,” she says quietly but she doesn’t look up at me.

“Is everything ok?” I ask her. Maria is not normally so quiet and evasive around me and I try to remember if I’ve done anything to upset her recently.

She’s quick to reassure me. “Yeah, I’m fine.”

“Are you sure?”

She smiles and looks me in the eye. “I’m fine. It’s really busy, I should get out there.” She slips past me but I catch her arm and hold her in place. She might be Kyle’s future stepsister but she’s practically been my surrogate little sister since she was two years old. I keep an eye out for her just as I do for Liz.

“If there’s anything bothering you or whatever, you know you can come to me, right?”

“I know.”

“Is there anything?”

“Nothing. I guess… I’m just worried about Liz.”

“You’re just worried because she’s sick? There’s nothing going on with Liz that I should know about?”

She hesitates for just the briefest of seconds then shakes her head. “Nothing.”

***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Wed Jul 21, 2010 3:43 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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nibbles2
Obsessed Roswellian
Posts: 754
Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2005 1:01 pm
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In which Maria makes a big decision

Postby nibbles2 » Sat Apr 18, 2009 9:06 am

saramlover

Chanks girl

Alien_Friend

keepsmiling7

lilah Isabel lives in Roswell and sees Liz pretty often so she’s always known what Liz looks like.

tequathisy word

DaleStateShorty

Blondie If Michael had anything other than brotherly feelings for Maria now, it would be wrong and creepy.

Emz80m True

Rowedog Spare me from the wet trout, please.

destinyc

mezz

begonia9508 Max has been emailing and phoning Michael all the time he was away. They went to Europe together and met up in Boston a few times. And Max has been back to Roswell too (it’s just that Liz was away those times.) He asks after Michael’s family all the time. But he’d forgotten how Maria used to follow them around crushing on Michael all the time.

RiceKrispy Is Michael overprotective of her? He looks out for her but I don’t think he’s ever been overprotective.

veronica welcome

TrudyGill23 Yeah, Michael knows everything Liz has done. He just doesn’t know it’s her yet.

April I love this Michael. He’s way smarter and more grown up than Liz gives him credit for. Maria doesn’t just like him for his looks you know.

kay_b It’s not that Max thinks that Maria isn’t ‘that young’. It’s that he hasn’t seen her in four years so she’s remained a lot younger in his head. And seeing her as a teenager makes him realise that she’s older now. Doesn’t mean he thinks she’s ‘old enough’.

Tamashii

xmag

Thank you all for reading and for your wonderful feedback. I've come to the end my my stock piled beta'd parts so it may be longer before I post the next update.


Crush – 7

Maria

If looks could kill, Sheriff Valenti would be arresting my mother for my murder right now instead of trying to make small talk with me as he twirls his spaghetti around his fork.

I can’t really blame my her. This is an important night for them, it’s the first time that Jim has been over since he and Mom officially became a couple. They’re having dinner with Kyle at the weekend and then I guess sometime in the near future, the four of us will sit down together for the first time. Very few men, out of the many my mother has dated over the years, have made it to the family dinner stage so this is a big deal for my Mom.

And I’m acting like a moody teenager who is all but ignoring Jim and not engaging in any of his attempts to make conversation. Hence the evil glares coming my way from mom’s direction.

It’s not that I have a problem with Jim, really. As far as my Mom’s boyfriends go, he’s probably the most decent guy she’s brought home by a mile. It’s just that I’m so distracted and worried about the Liz situation right now that I couldn’t be polite if the Queen of England came to dinner. Which would be totally weird.

I really don’t know what to do about Liz.

Liz would know what to do if the situation was reversed. This is partly why I’m so mad at her. She’s messed with the natural disorder of the universe. She’s the smart, responsible, sensible one. I’m the crazy, irresponsible one. I’m the one who’s supposed to get into dumb scrapes and have Liz come to bail me out. I’m not equipped to handle this type of situation.

She’s been avoiding me since Max dropped her off outside my house on Monday night. After crying off sick yesterday, she switched her shift today so that we weren’t working together.

I don’t think we’ve ever gone two full days without a serious conversation. Even when she and her family went on vacation we used to talk on the phone. I had to get my first job just so I could afford to call Liz in Florida after my mother declared she wasn’t going to pay for the calls we racked up every summer.

If I made more of an effort to force her to talk to me, she probably would. But I have no idea what to say to her, so I’ve let her avoid me.

Liz has a smart and logical brain. She wouldn’t be continuing this deception unless she had reasoned it out and convinced herself that it wasn’t wrong. She’s so damn stubborn. If she thinks she’s right then I have no chance to change her mind. Liz doesn’t change her mind once it’s made up. It’s her way and that’s it. Anything that I say to her, she’s going to have an answer for. I need something she’s can’t refute or deny.

The thing is, I totally understand why she didn’t tell him the truth. That evening in the desert sounded totally romantic and if I had the chance to have an evening like that with Michael, I don’t think my real name and age would have been allowed to interfere with it. But I would like to think that I wouldn’t have had sex with Michael while lying to him about who I really am. I’d like to think that I’d be honest. Being with Michael wouldn’t mean as much if he thought I was somebody else. I would want him to be with me. To say sweet things to me and to say my name. Not a made up name. Liz thinks she’s OK with Max believing she was Lucy Smith when she lost her virginity. But I know Liz. I know that she’ll come to regret that sooner or later. Liz is a diehard romantic. She’s had the perfect first time worked out since we read Judy Bloom’s Forever. And it didn’t involve loosing it in the back of a car with a drunk guy.

“Maria,” My mother’s annoyed voice breaks through my thoughts.

I look up and wince at the glare I receive. “Yeah?”

It’s Jim who answers. “I was just asking if have any plans for the summer.”

“Working and hanging out I guess,” I say with a shrug.

He smiles politely and nods. I don’t look at my mother but I can sense she’s close to erupting. I know that I have to make some sort of effort to talk to the Sheriff before she shoots me but all I can think about is the Liz situation.

Wait, Jim’s the sheriff.

If anybody can come up with something to say to Liz it should be him. But how do I ask him? I debate this to myself for a few minutes and come to a conclusion, I have no other choice. Liz won’t listen to me.

“Sheriff, can I ask you a hypothetical question?” I ask, cutting in across my mother who was telling him an amusing anecdote about a guy who came into her store today. She blinks at me in surprise.

“It’s Jim, and of course you can.”

He looks at me expectantly and my mother waits too, her fork poised halfway between her mouth and the plate.

I lick my lips and clear my throat. I shift around in my seat. I open my mouth and close it again, twice. They both wait.

OK, Maria. Ask.

“OK. Uh… shit.”

Shit. I just said shit in front of my mother.

“Maria,” she chides. But she says it gently. I think she realizes that what I want to ask is serious.

I can’t do this. I can’t ask the sheriff about this. Not with my mother sitting right beside me. She’s like a bloodhound when it comes to things like this. They’ll have the whole story out of me in minutes.

But I can’t let Liz continue to lie to Max like this. I have to stop her from getting into an even bigger mess than she’s in right now. She’s going to get found out, and when she does, she’ll be crushed. I have to stop her before she goes too far. But I think she already went too far.

I sigh and rub my eyes. I really don’t know how to handle this.

My mother takes my hand and squeezes it gently. “Sweetheart, whatever it is, you can tell us.”

I look up and meet Jim’s concerned eyes. And something in his calm and concerned gaze prompts me to start talking.

“The legal age of consent in New Mexico is seventeen, right?” Jim nods and I continue. “I know that if somebody under the age of seventeen has sex with somebody who’s older then the adult can be charged with statutory rape? But what happens if he didn’t know the girl was underage? Hypothetically?”

“How old is this hypothetical couple? If it’s a case of a seventeen year old guy having sex with his sixteen year old girlfriend, then we’d probably have a stern word with them but unless the parents made a big deal out of it or it appeared that the girl was being coerced, then we’d mostly turn a blind eye.”

“Say, hypothetically that the girl is sixteen and the guy is twenty-two. But he thinks that she’s the same age as him.”

“That’s a difficult question for me to answer,” Jim says. He’s speaking carefully, considering his words. “It would be better put to a lawyer. What I can tell you is that if a crime is committed, I would arrest the person who committed it. And having sex with an underage girl is a crime. After that, it’s up to the courts. The defense can say that the man made a genuine mistake and would never have had sex with the girl if he had known how young she really was. It would be up to judge and jury to decide if he’s telling the truth and how to deal with it.”

“What about the girl? Would she get in trouble?”

“Possibly with her parents,” Jim says with a small smile. “Not with me. In my eyes, if a man takes advantage of an underage girl, then he doesn’t deserve much sympathy. The law is there for a reason, Maria. It’s there to protect children from doing things that they are physically and emotionally not ready for. It’s there to prevent pricks from hurting them. And any man who has sex with a high school girl should be made to feel the full force of the law.”

“Even if he genuinely didn’t know that the girl was only sixteen? What if she had deliberately made him believe that she was twenty-two?”

Jim takes a sip of water and mulls over my question at length. “Well, again, it’s a crime and so the man would be charged. Especially in my jurisdiction, I would never set that kind of precedent of letting a man that age away with having sex with a minor. It would be up to the court to decide how to deal with him after that. My best guess is that the defense would haul the girl into court and give her a very tough time. They would make her out to be the worst kind of jezebel going. She could also be charged with a number of offences – fraud, inducement to commit a crime. That sort of thing. She would certainly suffer the consequences of her actions.”

My mother touches his hand gently. “I read an article a while ago about a rapper or a singer who had been charged with having sex with a girl he knew or should have known to be underage.”

Jim nods, “Right. Again, it’s up to the DA and the courts but that’s a possible charge he could face.” He turns to me. “It would ruin his life. If he was convicted he would be sent to jail, he would be branded a rapist. And a child rapist is considered the worst criminal of all. He would carry that around with him for the rest of his life. Every time he applied for a job, if he married and wanted to adopt children, if he ran for public office, it would be there. Anytime something happened in his area, if a kid was missing or a woman was attacked, he would be the first suspect. Personally I have no problem with that happening to a man who deserves it, but it would be a terrible thing to happen to a guy who made an honest mistake.”

I nod dumbly. I never thought about how bad it could be for Max. I mean, I knew that he could be charged with statutory rape but I never considered the consequences of that. And who would believe Max if she said that he didn’t know she was only sixteen? Liz is his best friend’s sister. He’s known her most of her life. So what if he hadn’t seen her in a few years, nobody would believe that he didn’t recognize her. I can just see the prosecution hauling Liz into court. Without her grown up make-up and her sexy clothes, nervous and upset, Liz would look like a fourteen-year-old. Nobody would believe that she could pass as a college student.

And I’ve seen enough TV to know that the defense would tear her to shreds. They’d make her out to be an evil slut who set out to seduce and destroy Max Evans. It would be horrible.

“Maria, there’s another angle that you might not have considered in your hypothetical scenario,” Jim tells me. “The man might know the girl is underage. I’ve seen men who sniff around young girls that they know are too young. They buy them drink and sweet-talk them and play along. The girl thinks she knows what she’s doing. When really what’s happening is that he’s taking advantage of her. They manipulate the girls into doing something they might not want to do.”

I never thought of that. What if Max knew who Liz was the whole time and he had played along with her pretense just to get into her pants? What if he was using Liz to get back at Michael for dumping Isabel the day before senior prom? What if he was a pervert who had been harboring fantasies about Liz for years and couldn’t believe his good fortune when she threw herself at him? What if he’s the kind of asshole who likes to mess around with high school girls and take their innocence?

I think back to how upset Liz was the night she had sex with him. He had hurt her. Liz said it was because he didn’t know she was a virgin, but what if he knew and didn’t care?

Oh God.

Now I really don’t know what to do.

I don’t think that Max is that kind of person. I think he’s a good guy. But I don’t know that for absolute certain. What if he’s taking advantage of her? What if he’s hurting her and I say nothing? I can’t run that risk. I can’t let him hurt Liz.

And if Max is a good guy, can I let Liz hurt him? Can I let her trick him into committing a crime that could destroy his life?

Ok, I do know what I have to do. I have to put a stop to this situation right now.

I stand up abruptly and cause my chair to fall backwards onto the floor.

“Maria?” My mom says and I know what she’s asking.

“It’s not me, I promise.”

She nods in relief.
Jim rises to his feet too. “Maria, I understand why you might not want to get me involved. I’m a cop. I’m dating your mother. But I can help. I have Kathleen Topolsky’s number. She can be here in twenty minutes. I know you’re not at school now but she’ll come if you need her. Or I have some very good female deputies who are trained to deal with situations like this.”

“Or if you like, I could talk to this girl’s parents. She would never have to know that you told us,” Mom adds.

I shake my head. “Thanks. I really appreciate your help. I really do. I’m going to talk to my friend first… but if she doesn’t listen to me then I’ll come to you guys. I promise.”

My mother gives me the tightest hug and kisses my cheek. “I’m so proud of you,” she whispers in my ear.

I don’t feel proud of myself. I actually feel pretty horrible.

I look at Jim and he gives me a nod. It’s a nod of good luck or God speed or whatever the appropriate thing to say in this situation is.

I just hope that Liz listens to me; the last thing I want is to have to tell tales about her to the sheriff and mom.

***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Sun Dec 13, 2009 5:08 am, edited 2 times in total.

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In which Max finds out

Postby nibbles2 » Mon Apr 27, 2009 12:18 pm

cocopucks
they are 16 and not 12 and therefore think it should be put in perspective and although maria is being a good friend liz was not raped or kidnapped.

As you say, Liz is sixteen. The age of consent in New Mexico is seventeen. No matter how much Liz wanted it, she legally cannot give consent to have sex. So technically, what happened between Max and Liz was rape.

chanks_girl Thanks

Rowedog Thank you. You know I don’t know what Maria would have done in Liz’s shoes. You never know.

xmag I agree. Maria has to step in and do something.

begonia9508 No, Liz is not an angel. She’s a typical teenager. Making a huge mistake.

Alien_Friend Yeah, Jim and Amy rock.

keepsmiling7 The party is most definitely over.

Emz80m really ugly

destinyc The good? Well… It might bring other people closer together.

Kay_bI don’t think there’s any way this could have ended without drama.

*Blondie* I think it shows the desperation Maria feels that she would go to Valenti about this.

Spacegirl23 Thanks.

TrudyGill23 Yeah, Michael will be very upset.

April I’m just glad that most people can see that Maria is doing the right thing. I wonder what they’ll think after this part though.

tequathisy You know, I thought that after hearing Jim’s argument that every body would see the sense in Maria’s decision. But just like Liz, there are some who are blinded to the wrongs because they want Max and Liz to be together, no matter what. Just like some candies are rooting for Michael and Maria despite the fact that at this point in time it would be a crime for them too.

DaleStateShorty Thanks.

veronica If Max was aware that he was doing wrong and that he might have to face consequences, they you might have a point. But Max isn’t aware that he’s having sex with an underage girl. If it’s made public, he’s the one who will be most affected by the consequences – namely a conviction for statutory rape and his whole life ruined. How can you dislike Maria for trying to help him but support Liz for putting him in this position in the first place?

behrluv32 Thank you.

Tamashii Thanks.

girl afraid lol, thanks.

sarammlover Thank you

somewhere87 The curse of being Maria.

bella_svetlana Thanks

wench on a leash Thanks.

Thanks everyone for reading and feedbacking. I love you all, even if I don't agree with some of your opinions I do love reading them. And I think this part will divide opinion too. :lol: All thoughts and opinions are welcome. Debate is good. Lets try and keep it civil.

Crush - 8

Michael

“Liz isn’t here.”

The thing about being a cop is that you develop an ability to sense when trouble’s afoot.

Take now for example. Maria shows up at the apartment, upset and anxious and looking for Liz - An hour after Liz has left for a sleepover at Maria’s house. It makes my spidey sense tingle.

“Not here? Oh…” she shifts nervously from one foot to another and bites her lip. Her gaze is trained somewhere around my knees. “Do you know where she is?”

“Well, she said that she was going to your house for a sleepover but I’m guessing that’s not the case, right?”

I wait for Maria to make some kind of excuse or act like she’s just remembered it’s tonight and they must have missed each other on the way. Something like that.

But Maria says nothing.

I have a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. Liz doesn’t lie. I’m not idiotic enough to think that Liz is an angel but she’s responsible and smart and sensible. And trustworthy. She might tell a few fibs to the parents about her activities on a Friday night when she says she’s going to the movies but she’s really going to a party.

That’s all harmless stuff though. God knows I did a hell of a lot worse when I was her age.

At least Maria has always been with her and while Maria might not be the most responsible or sensible teenager in the world, she’s protective of Liz and they look out for each other.

But if Liz is somewhere and Maria doesn’t know about it, that can’t be good. While Liz might tell the occasional lie to Mom and Dad and me, she wouldn’t lie to Maria.

“Do you want to come in and tell me what’s going on?” I ask.

Maria finally meets my eyes and I can see that she’s on the verge of crying. Slowly, uncertainly, she nods. “I think maybe I should.”

I stand back to let her into the apartment but she doesn’t move so I take her gently by the arm and lead her in. That sinking feeling is growing.

She sits on the couch and I’m struck at how young she looks. And how scared she looks. I take a seat on the armchair opposite her and try to appear calm. I don’t feel calm, though.

“Maria, where’s Liz?”

She looks down at the ground and wrings her hands. She doesn’t want to tell me, that much is obvious. Telling on your best friend is the biggest no-no in the book. But if she’s here and forcing herself to tell me, it really can’t be good.

Stay calm, I tell myself. Let her do it in her own time. If Maria thought Liz was in danger, she wouldn’t hesitate to tell me. But where the hell else could Liz be?

She lets out a shaky breath. “Max Evans.”

“What about him?”

“The girl he’s seeing…”

“Lucy Smith?” Where is she going with this?

Maria and nods and then shakes her head. “Liz and I got fake ID’s last week.” She looks up at me guiltily. “We used fake names, I’m Jenny Michaels and Liz is…” she trails off and looks at me expectantly. When I don’t say anything she sighs. “Liz is Lucy Smith.”

I shake my head, refusing to believe her. “No.” My mind is racing, remembering everything that Max has said about Lucy Smith. It just couldn’t be possible. Max wouldn’t have sex with my sister. Max wouldn’t have sex with an underage girl.

“Max wouldn’t…” I stutter.

“Max doesn’t know,” Maria tells me. And then the dam bursts and she starts rambling so fast I can barely keep up. “At least, I don’t think he knows. Liz is convinced that he doesn’t know but I was talking to the sheriff and he says that there are guys that prey on girls like Liz who are pretending to be older. I don’t think Max is one of those guys but I don’t know. And I know what Liz is doing is wrong but… I don’t know. I don’t know.” She buries her face in her hands and starts crying.

I’m in too much shock to say anything or make any move to comfort her.

She wipes her tears and continues. “She didn’t set out to trick him, she bumped into him at the bookstore and he didn’t know her so she pretended because she wanted him to get to know the real her. She was going to tell him the truth but she changed her mind, and I tried to convince her that she had to but she’s avoiding me and she won’t listen. She’s been in love with Max since forever and now that she has him she doesn’t care about anything else. It’s like she doesn’t even care that he could be arrested for statutory rape. She thinks that it won’t matter…”

Rape is one of those words that grab your attention and snap you out of your stupor.

Jesus, if Max has sex with Liz it’s counted as rape.

I was over at his house earlier, watching Isabel help him pick out a shirt to wear and a meal to cook. He had candles everywhere. He was planning on having sex. And I was cheering him on. Making crude jokes.

And the whole time it was about my little sister.

Abruptly, I stand up and grab my keys. Maria stops babbling and watches me through tear-soaked eyes. “Stay here,” I tell her.

I rush downstairs, taking them two at a time and almost collide with my Dad as he makes his way from the store room to his office. “Dad, you need to close up. Where’s Mom?”

“She’s at her book club. What’s wrong? Is it Liz?”

“Yeah. She’s not hurt but… look, I’m going to get her and bring her home. I’ll explain then. Can you call Mom and have her come home.”

He wants to ask more but I’m almost out the door and I guess he realizes that I don’t have time. He nods, his forehead creased with worry and concern.

I hurry to my car and head to Max’s place.

“Shit.” Pulled up at a red light, I slam the wheel with my fist. This is not good. Max is my best friend in the world. He saved my life when we were kids. He saved my ass countless times since then. He’s the one person who has always been there for me. And now I might have to arrest him?

Worse than that, I’m going to break his heart. I’d have to be stupid not to know that he’s falling hard for ‘Lucy Smith’ already. It’s going to crush him to find out that she’s not who she says she is.

I can’t believe Liz could be so selfish, so reckless, so stupid, so irresponsible. I can’t believe that she’d do this to Max. Or to me. Or to Maria. What the hell is she thinking? How does she think this relationship will go?

I pull up in front of Max’s house and switch of the engine.

Shit. Fuck. Damn.

This is going to be hell.

***


Max

I’m in heaven.

Lucy Smith is amazing. Everything about her is amazing.

We’re sitting on the couch, wrapped in each others arms, relaxing after dinner. I have dozens of candles scattered around the room and an ‘Ultimate Love collection’ CD playing quietly. It’s Isabel’s CD. I don’t own an Ultimate love collection’.

The Gods were really smiling down on me the day they directed me into that bookstore. I’ve never met a girl so beautiful and sweet. If you asked me to write down every good quality I would want in a girl, it would pretty much be a description of Lucy.

“Is it possible to be in love after only a week?” I ask.

She smiles at me. “When I’m with you, anything feels possible.”

“God we’re cheesy,” I say and we both laugh.

But I don’t care. Every cheesy love song on that CD suddenly makes sense to me. I know what they’re talking about now.

Kyle and Michael think it’s hilarious. When I tried to tell them how I was feeling earlier, Michael threatened to file a missing persons report for my balls. Even Isabel thinks I’m an idiot.

But I don’t care.

“Dinner was lovely, Max, thank you.”

“I just heated it up, Isabel made it,” I admit.

“Hmmm, she made the picnic too. Maybe I should be dating her instead of you,” Lucy teases.

I wrap my arms tighter around her. “She’ll have to fight me, you’re mine.”

She sits up, pulling herself out of my embrace and faces me. She bites her lip nervously but looks me dead in the eye. “Why don’t we take this into your room?”

I almost knock her over in my eagerness. She giggles and it calms us both down a little. I grab the bottle of wine and our two glasses and then lead her by the hand to my bedroom.

I have dozens of candles scattered in here too but they’re not lighting so I switch on a small desk lamp. Lucy sits on my bed and looks around and nods approvingly.

Thank God my parents decided to make our bedrooms more grown up when we left for college. The way it was before screamed high school student and I can’t think of a bigger turn-off than that.

She takes a sip of wine as I move around the room lighting the candles. When I’m done I switch off the desk lamp and sit down beside her.

“I’m a little nervous,” she says shyly.

“We don’t have to do anything if you’re uncomfortable or not ready.”

She shakes her head. “I’m comfortable and I’m ready. I’m just nervous too. The good kind of nervous – excited nervous.”

“We’ll take it slowly,” I assure her. I had planned to anyway because I really, really want to make it up to her for the first time. I didn’t take it slow then and that was the biggest mistake ever. Somebody as wonderful as Lucy deserves to be appreciated and worshipped.

Lucy puts down her glass and scoots closer to me, leans in and kisses me. I respond eagerly and have to remind myself to take it slowly. I explore her mouth with my tongue, gently run my hands over her arms and run it through her hair.

I think I’m developing a hair fetish.

Her hands are on my chest. Slowly as we kiss she unbuttons my shirt and then caresses my bare chest. My hand drops down to her back and fumble with the corset she’s wearing.

Jesus, I nearly died when she took off her coat and I caught my first glimpse of her tonight. Wow. The corset she’s wearing has to be the sexiest thing I have ever seen. She’s wearing a red bra underneath it and for the first ten minutes my eyes were glued to it. It took a superhuman effort to look her in the face.

I’m so intent on trying to figure out how to undo the damn thing that I don’t even realize that I’ve stopped kissing her until she giggles.

“Need some help?” She asks.

“Yes,” I admit in defeat. She pulls away, reaches behind her back and wriggles a little. The corset falls away and she drops it to the floor.

And now I’m having my second heart attack of the night.

“Wow,” I breathe and reach out to cup her breasts. I manage to stop myself just in time but she laughs again, catches my wrists and pulls me to her so that my hands are fondling her breasts.

She moans, and it gives me confidence. I kiss her again and she pulls me closer, lying back in the bed until I’m on top of her. I undo her bra and toss it over my shoulder, cupping her breasts and then taking her nipple in my mouth.

“Max,” she moans, arching her back to my touch. She rakes her nails down my back.

I move up again and take her lower lip into my mouth. Simultaneously, we reach for each other’s jeans and begin to undo them. Not the easiest thing to do when you’re as tangled up as we are, but we somehow manage to slip out of our jeans without breaking our kiss. I pull away at that point to take a look at her body and she admires mine. She’s blushing, and I can feel my own cheeks heat up.

“You’re beautiful,” I tell her sincerely.

I’ll admit that I’ve used that line on girls before. This time, I really, really mean it.

“I want you so badly,” she tells me throatily.

Oh God, I’m going to die of happiness tonight. She pulls me back to her and we kiss again. Hungrier, more urgent now. Our hands roam over bare skin, seeking out all we can find, tasting and touching.

At the exact moment she reaches into my boxers to take my cock in her hand the door bell rings.

Or somebody leans heavily on the doorbell and doesn’t let up. I can hear them banging on the door too.

“Noooooo,” I protest with a groan.

“Ignore them, they’ll go away,” Lucy says, kissing my neck and pushing my boxers down my legs.

But the ringing and knocking continues. As much as I hate to, I pull away from her. “I’m going to get rid of them, don’t go anywhere.”

I pull on my pants and my shirt and button them up as I hurry down to the hall to the door.

I yank it open with one thing in mind — getting whoever it is to leave as quickly as possible.

“Michael, what the fuck are you doing?” I ask when I find my best friend standing on the other side.

He brushes past me and I’m so surprised that I don’t even stop him. I follow him into the living room where he looks around.

“Where’s your date?” He asks.

“She’s in my room,” I hiss under my breath. “You have to go; this is a really bad time.”

“Max,” he says.

That’s all he has to say and I know it’s serious. He rubs his face and then clutches a handful of his hair. He swears under his breath.

“Michael, what is it?” I ask nervously.

I hear bare feet approach from behind and I turn around to see Lucy in the hallway with a sheet wrapped around her body.

“Max, who was it? Is everything ok?” she asks. As she enters the living room, Michael takes a step closer to me and she sees him for the first time. Her eyes grow wide with alarm. “Michael.”

“Get dressed,” he orders. Although he’s calm, I can hear the fury in his voice. I frown in confusion; I thought Michael didn’t know Lucy.

She opens her mouth to say something but he cuts her off. “Now, Liz.”

Liz?

Liz!

Liz?

“What’s going on? Who’s Liz?” I ask.

Lucy takes a step towards me, then stops. The expression on her face is one of devastation.

“Who’s Liz?” I ask again.

She hangs her head. “I’m Liz.”

I feel sick.

“Liz…?”

“Liz Parker,” she says.

No, no, no, no, no. Please no.

She rushes to me, tears streaming down her face. “Please Max, listen to me.”

I push her away and look at Michael. He’s looking at me in sympathy but tears his gaze away from me and to his sister. “Get dressed Liz, right now.”

“No,” I say. “Liz Parker is only thirteen or fourteen years old.”

“I’m almost seventeen,” Liz cries. “I’ll be seventeen in a few months. It’s only a few months. Why should it matter? I’m not a kid. I’m not a child.”

Michael steps forward, grabs her arm and drags her to my bedroom. I hear him yell at her to get dressed. I take a faltering step to the door so that I’m looking out into the hallway. Michael and I face each other at opposite ends of the corridor.

“I didn’t know. I wouldn’t have, Michael. I wouldn’t.”

“Max…” he looks devastated too. He shakes his head. I don’t know what that means.

The door of my room opens and Liz steps out, dressed in her tight jeans and black corset. How could I not tell who she was? How could I not see that she’s a teenager?

She’s about to say something to me again but I can’t listen. I don’t want to know what she has to say. I turn my back on her and rush into the kitchen; I pull open the back door and out into the backyard.

Then, leaning over my mother’s prized roses, I throw up until I can throw up no more.

***

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In which the shit hits the fan

Postby nibbles2 » Thu May 07, 2009 5:21 pm

April I love Max in this fic and I hate having to hurt him like this.

keepsmiling7 Yeah, the party is most definitely over now.

chanks_girl I think Michael was simply in a state of shock and panic.

Alien_Friend Reading with your eyes closed? Impressive trick.

trulov If Liz had been home when Maria got there, then Maria would have given her another chance. She would have talked to her and told her what Jim had said. Unfortunately, Liz wasn’t there. She was with Max. Maria knew that much, but she didn’t know where Liz and Max were. They might have been out in the desert again, they might have been at his house, they could have been anywhere. She had to make a split second decision, under Michael’s glare and with Jim’s ominous warnings ringing in her ears. That’s the position Liz put Maria in by lying and using Maria as an alibi.

RiceKrispy It’s not that Liz doesn’t care. She just thinks that because she’s only a few months shy of seventeen that it doesn’t matter so much. And truthfully, she’s only living in the moment, she’s not thinking about the future.

cocopucks Yes maturity doesn’t always come with age. And turning 17 is not going to make Liz any more mature than she is now.

spacegirl23 I think everybody was expecting Michael to react in the clichéd over-protective way. I like to buck the trend.

AlysLuv Liz wasn’t thinking. She was too consumed with Max.

Mezz You pretty much hit the nail dead on.

Rowedog I wouldn’t want to be in any of their positions. They all suck.

CandyXdreamer Love your avi.

tequathisy And like all the worst car crashes – it’s going to take a long time for them to recover from this.

veronica thank you.

begonia9508 I don’t know if I’d say that sexual matters between friends should always be dealt with through family. There’s many occasions where that would be the wrong thing to do. In this instance, keeping it in the family is probably the best.

*Blondie* Yeah, it was pretty harsh for Max.

destinyc If she’d known where Max was and if it wasn’t likely that he wasn’t having sex with an underage girl right at that moment, Maria would have gone to him. Liz’s actions meant Maria didn’t have that option.

polar vixen That’s true, even if this never goes to the courts, Max’s life could still be ruined.

sarammlover lol, glad it worked out for you and your friend.

Cocogirl Liz should have known. And she does know. She just ignored it.

vilandragirl Liz knows the law. She wouldn’t be hiding and lying if she didn’t know what she was doing was wrong.

Emz80m thanks

uw51 Indeed, the shit has hit the fan.

Tamashii Yes, Liz has been the maker of her own misfortune.

Smac I really hope that I can change your mind about Max and Liz, but that’s a long way off in the future.

xmag Interesting.

DaleStateShorty Thank you.

Evelynn Maybe if Liz hadn’t been dressed to deliberately look like a college student, he might have recognised her. Or you know, if she hadn’t lied to him.

kachie Max should have known better? The point is he didn’t know. If he knew it was Liz and that she was underage, he wouldn’t have laid a finger on her. Liz, on the other hand, did know better. She knew what she was doing was wrong – hence the lying and the sneaking – and she still did it.

Wench on a leash Thank you.

And to the awesome Michelle in Yonkers, you rule.




Crush - 9


Liz


I can’t believe this is happening.

Minutes ago I was in Max’s bed, the happiest I had ever been in my life and now I’m sitting in my brother’s car. I feel like I’ve been in a car crash, my body feels like it’s been smacked by something large and moving at high speed.

One minute everything was perfect and now, it’s all ruined. The look on Max’s face, God, he hated me. If only I’d had a bit more time. I know that with a few more days he would have felt the same way about me as I do about him and then my stupid age wouldn’t matter.

What if Michael has ruined everything between Max and me?

Michael says nothing to me on the drive home but I can practically feel his anger radiating off his body. His grip on the wheel is a death grip. His whole body is rigid and he bores a hole through the window with his eyes. I don’t think he sees the road but somehow we make it to the Crashdown without dying.

He pulls his car into a spot close to the restaurant and switches off the engine. We both sit in silence.

Suddenly he turns and faces me. He clears his throat. “Liz, Max may be my best friend but you’re my sister so if you’re worried that you can’t tell me something or that I won’t believe you, I’ll listen and I’ll believe you.”

I frown in confusion, not really understanding what he means.

“Did Max put pressure on you or-”

“No,” I shout. “God, it wasn’t like that Michael. He’s an amazing, sweet, wonderful guy and I can’t believe that you even asked me that. Max would never hurt anybody.”

A movement at the door to the Crashdown catches my attention. My dad is holding open the door to allow a couple to exit. He closes it after them, and locks it. He has the closed sign turned out to the street. I check my watch, there’s over an hour to closing and dad never closes early.

“Why is dad closing up?” I ask. My voice sounds unnaturally high. Michael just gives me a look before he climbs out. He wouldn’t.

I jump out and rush around the car to face him. “You told him?” I shriek.

“I haven’t told him anything yet, just to close up. I’m going to tell them both now.” He tries to step around me but I jump in front of him and grab his shirt.

“You’re going to tattle on me? Michael, don’t be ridiculous. Come on, there’s no need to get them involved. I screwed up, I get that. I’m sorry. But you’re blowing things out of proportion.”

I can tell that Michael is trying really hard to stay calm. “Liz, this is way too serious and you should know that. We’re talking about statutory rape here.”

“I just told you that it was consensual. I wanted it Michael, I asked for it. If I didn’t want to have sex with him I would have said something and he would have respected it.”

“You’re sixteen Liz, you can’t give consent. Not to mention that you’ve been lying to everybody, engaging in underage drinking, sneaking into clubs and who knows what else.”

“You are such a hypocrite,” I spit. “You did way worse than this when you were my age.”

Michael shakes his head. “I did stupid stuff Liz but I never did something this bad. I never hurt anyone.”

“You broke up with Isabel the day before senior prom and then took her friend, while she had to go alone.”

“I was an ass. And there were mitigating circumstances. But there was never a chance she was going to get thrown in jail for it.”

“Then why are you telling Mom and Dad? If you don’t say anything, nobody will know. But if you get them involved, they’ll go apeshit.”

“I’m not going to lie to them.”

“Don’t lie, just don’t tell them,” I plead. “Don’t tell them about Max, please Michael. You know they won’t take it well. You can tell them the other stuff I did, the fake ID and sneaking out to the club. They don’t need to know anything else.”

“I’m telling them everything Liz,” He says firmly and brushes past me. My dad has opened the door to let another couple out and he pauses when he sees us. I can see the questions in his eyes but he says nothing as we approach.

“Michael,” a voice calls out and I realize that the couple who emerged from the diner was Isabel Evans and her ‘secret’ boyfriend Jesse Rameriez. She hurries over to Michael and puts her hand on his arm. Her voice is full of concern. “Is everything ok?”

Michael looks at me and gestures for me to go inside. I move slowly in, trying to overhear what he’s going to say but he’s waiting until I’m inside. Dad shuts the door and looks at me. Or rather, looks at my outfit. He raises an eyebrow.

Damn Michael. Why is he telling them, it’s so stupid? I could kill him.

My dad is about to ask me what’s going on but Alex Whitman approaches. “Goodnight Mr. Parker. Hey Liz, is everything ok?”

I nod tersely, my eyes on Michael outside. Isabel looks incredibly anxious but he’s talking to Jesse. Isabel’s boyfriend is a lawyer I remember suddenly. Is Michael going to tell the entire town? They finish up and Isabel hurries away.

My dad opens the door to let Michael in and Alex out. Michael stops him from leaving. “Can you wait a moment, Maria’s upstairs and she’s going to need a ride home.”

Maria.

I’ve been so focused on what happened that it never even occurred to me to wonder how it happened. Michael knew I was there when he showed up. How? Because big-mouth Maria told them. I’m going to kill her.

I rush past dad and run up the stairs, taking them two at a time. I burst through the apartment door and into the living room.

Maria is sitting on the couch; her eyes are red and puffy and tears are streaming down her cheek. My mother has her arm around Maria, a look of confusion and worry on her face. They look up as I burst in.

Immediately, Maria is on her feet. “I’m sorry Liz. I’m so sorry. I didn’t know what else to do.”

Before I even know I’m doing it, I slap her across the face. She’s stunned into silence and her mouth flaps open.

“How could you do that me?” I scream.

My mother rushes to stand between us and tries to calm me down but I’m so furious right now that I don’t even see her.

“You ruined everything,” I continue. “He hates me now and it’s all your fault. You had no right to interfere.”

I lunge for her, brushing past my mother like she’s not even there. Maria doesn’t even raise her hand to defend herself as I grab her hair and pull as hard as I can. I just want to hurt her.

Without resistance from Maria, we fall onto the floor, I sit up, straddling Maria and raise my hand to smack her again when I’m lifted clean off her and deposited onto the couch by Michael.

My dad helps Maria up off the floor and asks if she’s ok but Maria is just looking at me, crying silently. Does she expect me to feel sorry for her? I stand up and mom plants herself right in front of me. But I’m not going to make another move.

“Alex is downstairs, he’s going to give you a ride home,” Michael says gently as he guides Maria to the door. She goes with him dumbly.

“You only did it to impress Michael,” I call after her. “But he just thinks you’re a stupid kid.”

“Liz, that’s enough,” Mom hisses. “Go to your room and change out of those clothes then come back here and we’ll talk.”

“I just have to lock up downstairs,” my dad says as I walk past him to my room. I can here then talking quietly to themselves until I shut the door of my bedroom and it blocks them out. I lean against the door and bang my head against it.

Damn, how could this day have gone from being so wonderful to being so hellish?

I remove the clothes I’m wearing with a pang, remembering how they were removed only an hour earlier. Damn it.

I pull on a sweatshirt and a pair of jeans that I can breathe in and my sneakers. I go into the bathroom and wash my makeup off.

It can’t end like this. I can’t have it end this way. No way. I know that Max and I belong together, that we’re special together. There’s no way that it can be over like that. What we shared was special and wonderful.

I have to see him. I have to explain, make him understand that I wasn’t trying to make a fool out of him or trying to hurt him. He has to know how I feel about him and I have to know what he feels for me now. I have to know if there’s any way for us to get past this. I have to know how to make it better.

My mind is made up. I’m going to see Max. My parents can wait. I know what they’re going to say anyway – Liz, you’ve let us down, we’re so disappointed, grounded forever, blah, blah, blah.

I’m going to see Max. Thank God for the fire escape off the balcony outside my room.

After checking that the coast is clear, I swing my legs over the edge and climb down.

“Hi, Liz.”

I jump at the sound of a female voice and whirl around. It’s Cindy, one of the waitresses who was on duty tonight. She’s lighting up a cigarette and watching me with interest. I’m pretty sure that by now she and all the other waitresses on duty tonight have added the early closing, my vampy outfit and Maria’s tears together and come up with scandal.

Once again I want to kill Michael.

“Hi Cindy, do you have your car with you tonight?”

She takes a drag from her cigarette, obviously weighing up her choices. On the one hand if she gives me a ride she might find out what the hell ‘Perfect Liz Parker’ has been getting up to. On the other, aiding and abetting the escape of her boss’s daughter might land her in hot water.

“It’s around the corner,” she says eventually and leads me towards it.

My joy is short lived. Michael is standing right beside the car, talking to somebody on the phone. He was in the shadows as we came out of the alleyway so I didn’t notice him until it was far too late to run and hide.

Cindy and I both freeze, then Cindy realizes that Michael hasn’t even noticed she’s there so she shoots me a semi-apologetic look and scampers. Michael just shakes his head in the way that grown-ups do when the kid has disappointed them and walks me back inside.

Whatever chance I had with Max, however slim it was, it’s gone now.

***


Max

“Did you buy her alcohol at the club?”

“Yes.”

“How much?”

“I don’t know, I lost count. We took turns to buy the drinks. Maybe I bought three or four drinks for her.”

“Did you supply her alcohol at any other time?”

“Yes, twice. We shared a bottle of wine at a picnic two nights ago and another one tonight.”

Jesse pauses and makes some notes. I sit back in my chair, exhausted. He’s been grilling me for about an hour now and it’s been intense. He hasn’t been afraid to ask awkward, embarrassing questions and has probed me for every unsavory detail. I’m just really grateful that he had the sense to send Isabel out of the room before he started.

I’m a little worried about what she’s up to now. For a while I could hear her, first in the yard where she cleaned up my vomit and then in the kitchen as she tidied up after dinner. She’s been very quiet for the last twenty minutes and I have a sneaking suspicion that she’s left in order to hunt down Liz Parker and inflict a painful death on her.

“I’m sorry about this,” Jesse says.

“Don’t be. I understand and I’m grateful for your help.”

He nods awkwardly and Isabel knocks on the door. “Mom and Dad are here.”

We all go out to the living room as Mom and Dad come through the door. Mom runs first to Isabel and then me and hugs us both tightly. Isabel said she called them and told them to come home but didn’t say why, so I know that my mother was imagining all kinds of worst-case scenarios in her head on the drive home.

“What’s going on?” my dad asks.

Isabel and Jesse look at me to see if I want to tell them. I nod reluctantly.

“The girl I’ve been seeing… It turns out that she’s sixteen.”

My mother covers her mouth with her hand and sinks into the couch. My dad straightens up, his face grim.

“Did you have sexual relations with her?” He asks. My mother closes her eyes tightly.

I nod once. “Yes.”

He swallows and gives Jesse a look. They seem to communicate silently but I don’t get what they’re saying.

“Who is she?” my mother asks.

This is the part that I really hate. “Liz Parker.”

My mother is incredulous. “Liz Parker. Liz Parker?

“Jeff Parker’s daughter?” My dad asks. “Michael’s sister?”

“She’s a lying bitch,” Isabel interjects. “She lied to Max about who she was and deliberately dressed up to make herself look older. She spun him a huge web of lies. She did it on purpose, the little tramp. When I get my hands on her I’m going to kill her. I’m going to give her such an ass kicking she’ll never walk again. How dare she? We’re not going to let her get away with it right? She can be charged with something, fraud or entrapment or something? Right?” She whirls around to face Jesse and points her finger at this chest. “You better destroy her on the stand. Show everybody what a selfish, manipulative little bitch she is.”

Jesse turns to my Dad. “Michael found out about it and he took Liz home. He’s going to tell their parents everything. He says that he doesn’t know how they’ll react and he doesn’t think Max did anything wrong deliberately but that he has to make sure that Liz is alright and that she wasn’t hurt. He wanted me to come over and be here for Max.”

“That’s good isn’t it?” My mother says. “Michael knows Max would never hurt Liz. I’m sure that he’ll make his parents see that.”

Dad shrugs. “It’s good that Michael isn’t angry at Max, but Jeff and Nancy may feel differently. They don’t know Max the way Michael does and Liz is going to be their first concern.”

“And who knows what kind of bullshit story she’ll spin to get herself out of trouble,” Isabel hisses furiously.

“Isabel,” my mother says softly and shakes her head.

Isabel bursts into tears and collapses onto the couch, her body heaving in angry sobs.

I feel numb.

I should be angry. I should be frightened. I should be thinking about how I’m going to get out of this mess.

But I don’t feel anything.

“I’ve been going over everything with Max,” Jesse says in his lawyer voice. “It’s a serious situation. Not only did Max have intercourse with a minor but he supplied her with alcohol on three separate occasions. It will be difficult to make a case that he was tricked and that he didn’t recognize Liz Parker, but not impossible. We’ll have to prove that Liz set out to seduce him, and it will involve tearing her character apart and painting her in the worst light.” His voice conveys how little he relishes that task and my respect for him grows.

Isabel scowls, she looks quite happy at the prospect but she says nothing. I realize that my mother has been crying silently for a while now. She and Isabel are holding each other’s hands in death grips. My dad is listening to Jesse and I can see his mind working furiously, but his face is ashen.

This is a legal household. Both my parents have law degrees. Isabel studies family law as part of her social work studies and I’m studying law myself. We all know without having to discuss it just how serious my situation is.

My dad, Jesse and I go back into the study. Jesse resumes his debriefing and my dad reads through Jesse’s notes.

About an hour later the doorbell rings and a deep panic seizes me. We stop and listen as Isabel answers the door.

“Sheriff Valenti,” she says loudly, for the benefit of us listening in the study I’m sure.

“Ready?” my dad asks me. I nod. He pats my shoulder and follows me out to the living room.

Jim Valenti and Michael are sitting on the couch, both in civilian clothes. My mother and Isabel are sitting on the couch facing them. They both look far more composed than earlier. They look ready to go to war.

I meet Michael’s eyes and he doesn’t look away. There’s a hurricane of emotion whirling within them.

We take our seats.

It’s Valenti who speaks first. “Liz’s friend, Maria Deluca is the daughter of the woman I’m seeing. She knew what was happening from the beginning and was worried about it. She spoke to her mother and me about it this evening but she didn’t mention names. I encouraged her to tell an adult about it and she chose to tell Michael. She was very upset and told her mother and me the full story after she told Michael. I’m not here in an official capacity. I’m here because Michael asked for my advice, and he figured that you might have a few questions for me too.”

“Will the Parkers be pressing charges?” Jesse asks.

“At the moment Liz is pretty adamant that it’s all her fault and that Max had no idea who she really was. My parents are satisfied that she’s telling the truth, for now. Jim has arranged for Kathleen Topolsky to come by tomorrow and talk to Liz. She’s the counselor at the high school. They also want Jim to talk to Max, to question him unofficially.”

“I would advise against that,” Jesse responds to Michael.

He nods, having expected that from Jesse. “As Max’s friend, can I just say that I think it would be a good idea to let Jim question him? My parents just want to know the truth. They want to be completely satisfied that Liz wasn’t coerced or pressured to sleep with Max. They trust Jim to be absolutely impartial. If he and Ms. Topolsky confirm that Liz acted under her own influence, then they won’t be bringing any charges.

Dad and Jesse exchange looks again then my dad raises an eyebrow at me and I nod.

“Jesse will be with Max during the interview,” my dad tells them.

Valenti proves to be as tough an interrogator as Jesse or my dad. He doesn’t try to bully or trick answers out of me. He’s tough but fair. I’m really glad that Jesse and Dad went through this with me earlier, - it helped order my thoughts and helps me formulate my answers so that I can say what I mean to say and not stumble over my own words.

The interview lasts about two hours, and when he’s finished Jim thanks me but doesn’t say anything else.

“How do you think that went?” I ask Jesse in a low voice as we walk back to the others.

“It was fine,” He grins. “You were a little more honest and forthcoming than I would normally suggest, but with Jim Valenti, I think that’s the best way to go. He could tell that you were being completely honest and so he’ll know that you genuinely didn’t know who Liz really was.”

His words ease some of the weight on my shoulders.

Mom hugs me when I come into the kitchen. She’s making sandwiches and puts one down in front of me without asking. I wolf it down it four bites. I didn’t realize that I was hungry until she gave me food.

“More?” She asks.

“Yes, please.”

“Max,” I look up and see Michael coming in from the patio. He jerks his head for me to follow him out. My legs shake as I walk out to join him.

I slide the door shut and face Michael.

“I’m so sorry Michael. I swear to you, I didn’t know who she was. I should have recognized her but I didn’t. I’d never betray you like that, I hope you know that.”

“I do,” he says. “I’m sorry I had to put you through that, Max. I believe you, but Liz is my little sister and I have to protect her first.”

“I know.”

“She didn’t set out to hurt you or make a fool of you. She thinks she’s in love with you and just wanted the chance to get close. I guess she just lost sight of what she was doing.”

I don’t want to talk about Liz. Michael picks up on that.

“Who else knows about this?” I ask.

He sighs. “My parents, Maria Deluca and her mother. Maria’s pretty protective of Liz so I don’t think she’ll tell anybody. Although… Liz was kind of mean to her tonight. No, I don’t think she’ll tell anybody. Except maybe Alex Whitman. He’s a kid in their class that they used to be really good friends with. But he’s as straight as they come, I know he won’t tell a soul. The people at the Crashdown tonight will know something’s up but they don’t know what it is so I’m sure that a couple of wild stories will circulate around town.”

“If you’re talking to Maria, can you say thanks to her from me? I know that it can’t have been an easy thing for her to do.”

Michael nods. “She wanted to make sure that Liz was safe but she knows you’re a good guy and didn’t want to see you get in trouble. If people find out, they’ll know that you’re a good guy Max. Nobody’s going to think that you’re a pervert or a monster.”

“Thanks.”

“I’m sorry Max,” he says. I can tell it’s heartfelt. “I’m going to go. Try not to worry about what might happen. I think this will be OK.”

He goes back inside and says goodnight to my family.

I guess I can take comfort from what he said to me but I don’t feel better. I feel like nothing’s going to be OK ever again.

***

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nibbles2
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In which Max and Liz leave town

Postby nibbles2 » Fri May 22, 2009 3:50 pm

Thank you, beautiful people.

spacegirl23 We’ll see how optimistic you are after this part.

Kachie I agree, Liz has a lot to atone for.

Wench on a leash Liz just doesn’t have her brain switched on right now.

DaleStateShorty Violent! In a twisted way, Liz was thinking of Max when she snuck out to see him. She wanted to make it better for him. She’s just not seeing things the right way at the moment.

Cocogurl LOL. I really do hope that if any minors reading this fic who are tempted to start a relationship with an older guy will think twice about it now.

destinyc Yes, teenagers, can’t live with them. Can’t kill them.

Alien_Friend Everybody has a switch I think, where they can just lose it. And that was Liz’s moment.

tequathisy It could have been a lot worse for Liz and Max both. I’m glad you think there’s hope because I’m beginning to wonder myself.

Blondie Thank you. I’m glad you still feel for Liz. I didn’t want to make her into a monster.

Begonia9508 They’re fixed on her age because she’s underage. Those three months make a crucial difference between sex between consenting adults and statutory rape. Michael dumped Isabel before the prom and took another girl, that does not compare with Liz has done and it doesn’t mean that Michael should look the other way.

chanks_girl I don’t really show the Parker’s reactions but I think you get an idea from this chapter.

sarammlover Yes, it could have been so much worse.

Rowedog You just described every teenager I know.

Tamashii Thanks.

Emz80m Thank you.

girl_afraid Thanks for reading.

xmag Michael and Jim were off duty so unless somebody makes an official complaint they don’t have to do anything about it.

Evelynn Thank you

keepsmiling7 That is so true, this is a lose/lose situation.

April You’re right, even if Maria had gone to Max it would have ended up the same way. He would have told Michael, Michael would have told his parents and Jim and Liz would still be angry at Maria.

And big thanks to my fabulous beta Michelle in Yonkers. Seriously, you rule.


Crush – 10

Maria

It’s been a week since D-day, or fight night, or whatever you want to call it.

I haven’t seen Liz since then. I’ve tried calling her, but she refused to talk to me and the Parkers suggested I give her a few days to cool down.

This is whole new territory for us. Liz and I have never had a falling out this huge before and I don’t know how to get past it. My mother says to give her time, but I’m not the ‘sit back and wait’ type of person. All my instincts tell me to go see her and plead with her until she sees that I was only trying to look out for her. I feel so guilty and horrible and I just want her to talk to me.

A whole week has passed and no word from her. But I’ve had more calls from all my other friends in the past seven days than I got all last year.

Naturally enough, as soon as people got the hint of a scandal, the gossip mill went into overdrive. The senior girls I’d hung out with when Liz ditched me at the club made it their business to inform the entire population of West Roswell that Liz had been dirty dancing with Max. Others saw them ‘going at it’ in the town park. And there were a dozen other sightings of them performing depraved and lewd acts all over town.

Strange how none of these people thought to say anything until after I’d betrayed my best friend and destroyed our friendship.

After four days I turned my phone off completely and only turned it on to check messages or to text Liz.

Mostly, I’ve been sitting on the couch, watching TV and wishing that I could go back to work.

I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop. After all, I admitted to having a fake ID, going to a club, drinking, lying and generally being a reckless and irresponsible teenager — the types of things that usually result in groundings, loss of privileges, disappointed head shakes, and long lectures.

Instead my mom has been pretty awesome and understanding. She took away my fake ID of course, although truthfully, I was glad to give it up. Then she reminded me that her big act of teenage rebellion resulted in her getting pregnant and dropping out of high school and we ate ice cream and watched Gossip Girl together.

Maybe she thinks the spilt lip that I’m currently sporting is punishment enough. Either way, I’ve escaped any further reprimands.

Now the week is over and I’m going back to work, which means that I’m going to be in the same building as Liz for the first time since smackdown. I’ve heard she hasn’t worked since that night either, much to the disgruntlement of the other waitresses who’ve had to cover for Liz and me and cope with the influx of nosey spectators who have been flooding the Crashdown.

I’m so nervous about seeing Liz again. I have no idea what to say to make things okay between us again. I’ve been imagining all kinds of scenarios in my head.

When I reach the Crashdown, I find a scenario I hadn’t expected. Jeff Parker is putting Liz’s suitcase in the trunk of his car. Nancy is standing by the car talking to Michael, she looks upset. He puts his arm around her shoulders to comfort her. I park close to them and step out of the car just as Liz emerges carrying a piece of hand luggage.

Liz is leaving Roswell.

She walks right past Michael without looking at him and climbs into the back seat of the car.

“Liz,” I call.

She looks at me with an unreadable expression then turns away from me and speaks to her father. “Can we go now please?”

Her dad gets in and starts the car. Nancy gives Michael a kiss on the cheek, she smiles sympathetically at me and then hops in beside Jeff. I watch as the car drives away until it’s out of sight. Liz doesn’t look back once.

“Where’s she going?” I ask Michael. I can feel tears forming in my eyes.

“She’s going to stay with our aunt in Tallahassee for the rest of the summer,” he says in a tired voice.

“What?” I ask in a high-pitched voice before I break down in tears.

Michael pulls me inside and I follow blindly as he guides me up the stairs into the Parker’s apartment, all the while crying like a baby who’s just had her favorite toy taken away from her. He stuffs a wad of tissues in my hand and waits until I manage to get myself under control.

“Sorry,” I sniffle eventually.

“It’s ok.”

“So she’s really going?”

“Yeah, my aunt invited her to stay and Liz wanted to leave town for a while, so…” he shrugs. “It’s probably for the best.”

My best friend has left town without even looking at me. I don’t see how that’s for the best.

“I’m so sorry Michael,” I say. “This is my entire fault. I should never have allowed it to happen.”

“Maria, none of this is your fault,” Michael says sternly.

“No it is. It was my idea to get fake IDs and I was the one who wanted to go to the club. I told Liz I could make her look twenty-one. And I knew she was lying to Max and I should have stopped her. I should have made her stop.”

Michael shakes his head. “Liz is not a stupid sheep Maria. I know her. Once she gets a plan in her head, there’s no stopping her. She’s stubborn and headstrong. If she really wants to do something, she’ll damn well do it. And if she really doesn’t want to do something, no force on earth will make her do it. She made her mind up that what she was doing was justified and not you or anybody else could have convinced her otherwise.”

“She hates me now. I should never have told you.” I look up at him and suddenly feel so angry. “Why did you tell your parents anyway? I wouldn’t have told you if I’d known you were going to tell them.”

“I told my parents because I had to Maria,” he protests.

“No you didn’t. You could’ve dealt with it yourself and then none of this would have happened.” I’m shouting now and I don’t care. It feels good to shout and vent.

“Maria –”

“You’re such a hypocrite,” I shout over him. “Everybody knows you were sneaking out and getting drunk and sleeping around when you were our age. Why is it ok for you to do that and not Liz?”

He remains calm. “It’s not that simple and you know that Maria, or you would never have told me about it either. I knew you and Liz were drinking and going out. I wouldn’t have cared if Liz was sleeping with a guy her own age. But she wasn’t, she was sleeping with a man who was too old for her. And it was against the law. I never broke the law… ok, I might have broken the law but I never deliberately tricked somebody else into breaking the law. It was statutory rape, Maria. Do you know how serious that is?”

I nod mutely.

His voice is emotional now and I can see that he’s pretty upset. “And it wasn’t just any guy either, it was Max Evans. He’s my best friend. You understand the importance of protecting your best friend, Maria, that’s why you came to me. You were looking out for Liz. What if I hadn’t told mom and dad and they heard the rumors about Liz and Max that are going around town? Do you really think that they would have been satisfied to drop the matter if they’d heard that Liz and Max had sex in the town park or some of the other shit that’s floating around?”

His nose flares as she speaks and I realize that he’s really, really angry with Liz.

“Sorry,” I mumble.

“Don’t. I didn’t really handle things as well as I should have either. I’m a cop, I’m trained to deal with situations like that. But then I heard the word rape in connection with my little sister and my best friend and I panicked.”

“That’s understandable,” I assure him.

He shakes his head and leans back in his chair. “You know, if it was any other guy, except maybe Kyle, I don’t think I would have reacted in the same way. I’d probably be a lot less angry at Liz for starters. It’s just that Max…, he’s my best friend. But he’s more than that. He’s been there for me since I was four years old. Liz wasn’t even born then. I owe him so much. I wouldn’t be here today if it wasn’t for him. I’d be dead or in jail… He’s as much my brother as Liz is my sister.”

“She wasn’t trying to hurt you Michael,” I tell him softly.

“I know,” he sighs.

“How is Max doing?” I ask.

Michael looks at me then and shakes his head. “He’s devastated. He’s got a job in Albuquerque and he’s leaving today, too. He can’t stay in Roswell.”

“And how are you doing?” I ask. It never really occurred to me before that this would be so upsetting for him.

He shrugs. “Before I came to live here, I was fostered by this guy called Hank. He was an ass, he spent all his money on drink instead of food and when he got mad, he used to hit me.”

I suck in a breath. Liz says that Michael never talks about what happened before the Parkers fostered him.

Michael continues on and I’m not even sure if he’s aware that he’s telling me this. “Max used to bring food to school for me. And clean clothes, sometimes. He would give me toys to play with and books to read. He looked out for me when nobody else did, not my teachers or the social workers or my foster father. He was a little kid who was too afraid to say boo to a goose and he looked out for me. I made him promise not to tell anybody what Hank was like and he kept it secret for months. Then one time Hank beat the shit out of me and I couldn’t go to school for days. And Max rode his bike to the trailer park where I lived to check on me. He knew that he had to tell somebody so he told his parents. They got me out of there so quick… Max broke his promise not to tell and it saved my life… he’s a good guy. He didn’t deserve this and I don’t know if I can ever forgive Liz for that.”

My watch beeps the hour, I stand up and smooth down my uniform. “I’m about thirty minutes late for my shift, I should go.”

Michael nods but he doesn’t look at me as I walk past him. I stand in the doorway for a moment before I leave and watch him.

He looks devastated too.

I wish that I could have somehow seen the way this would end up before I ever suggested getting those damned ID’s.

***


Liz

I close my eyes as we pass the ‘Thank you for visiting Roswell’ sign. For the first time, my resolution wavers and I almost ask dad to turn the car around and take me home. The moment passes.

My dad looks over at me, taking in my reaction. I scowl and shift my body towards the window, taking in the scenery flying past outside the window. He sighs, switches on the radio and tunes in to a station that he likes. My mother remains silent beside him.

It seems they’ve got the message at last. I don’t want to talk. Because all they want to talk about is why. I don’t want to explain why. All week long, it’s all I’ve been hearing – “Why Liz? Why?”

How did they get it so wrong? How could I do that to them? To Michael? To Maria? To Max? Was it a cry for help? Why did I want to hurt them? And on and on…

To hear them talk, you’d think that I’d killed Max, or had a drunken orgy with the entire football team, or robbed a bank. I didn’t injure anybody, why do they keep asking me ‘why’?.

Jesus. What’s the mystery? I love Max. I want to be with him. Why is that so hard to understand? Why is that so incomprehensible?

Why do they act like what I did was so awful? The only person who has a right to be angry with me is Max. He’s the one I lied to. He’s the only one that I hurt.

I just wish that he had wanted to talk to me this week. I wish he had been the one who had come looking for an explanation. I wish I could have explained to him why I did it. I wish I’d had the chance to make things OK before I had to leave.



Maybe once I get to Florida, I’ll actually be allowed to use a phone again and I can call him. Maybe it’s better that he’s had a few days to calm down before we talk. But talking to him on a long distance call with my aunt keeping a beady eye on me isn’t the same as talking to him in person. It would be too easy for him to just hang up on me; it would be a lot harder for him to walk away from me if I were standing in front of him.

As we approach the highway, the car slows down and my Dad signals that he’s turning. I look at him in question.

“I’m just going to fill up on gas,” he explains.

He pulls up and waits in line. I climb out of the car.

“Where are you going Liz?” Mom asks.

“To get a magazine for the plane,” I say shortly.

Dad hands me some money. “Can you get me a pack of a gum and pay for the gas.”

“Sure.” The gas station is really busy so I figure I have time to look through magazines and pick one for the plane.

I’m debating between getting a new astronomy magazine or the latest edition of Vanity Fair when I get a strange prickling sensation on the back of my neck.

I turn around and scan the store.

My eyes light on Max, he’s picking up a bottle of water. I wonder why he’s here, at a gas station by the highway. My breath catches in my throat in shock at seeing him so unexpectedly, just as I’m leaving Roswell.

He’s dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, not the type of clothes he should be wearing on a work day. He looks scruffy, and not in a hot way – his hair is messy and he’s unshaven, he looks tired and worn out.

I look out the window and see my dad pulling his car in front of a pump. Parked to the side, I notice Max’s jeep. Even from where I stand, I can see that it’s loaded with bags. I put down the magazines and walk over to Max.

He’s got a bottle of juice in his hand now and has a deep frown of concentration. Surely, choosing a drink shouldn’t be so difficult.

I reach out to tap his shoulder, but my hand pauses in mid-air. I withdraw it and stuff it in my pocket. “Max,” I say tentatively.

He jumps and whips around to face me. A range of emotions flit across his face, too quickly for me to register which is the dominant one.

He takes a step back from me. “Liz.” His tone is cold. He glances nervously over my shoulder.

“Are you leaving Roswell?” I ask in surprise. Why is he leaving? I thought he planned to work for his dad this summer, he was so happy to be back in Roswell.

He shakes his head and tries to step around me, but I move to block his path.

He recoils, putting distance between us again. “Get out of my way, Liz.”

I flinch at the way he says my name, my real name.

“Max, I’m so sorry for lying to you. I never, ever intended for what happened to happen. I didn’t want to get you in trouble, I swear. I didn’t mean to lie to you.”

“Then why did you?” he asks. He’s furious, but keeps his voice low. His eyes dart nervously around to see if anybody is watching or listening.

“Max…”

“Why?” he repeats.

I hang my head and focus on a spot on the tiled floor. “I just wanted to spend time with you. I wanted to get to know you, and I wanted you to get to know me.”

“Get to know you?”

“Yes, me. The real me, not Michael’s little sister. You only ever see me as a kid and I just wanted you to see me for who I really am.”

“Oh right,” he sneers. “The real you who is a twenty-two-year-old college student named Lucy.”

“No.” My voice sounds small and pathetically young to my own ears. I can feel tears forming, ready to erupt but I fight them back. Facing Max’s anger and hurt makes me realize how misplaced my own anger has been. I have no right to be angry at anybody.

“No,” he agrees. “The real you is a lying, manipulative —.” He shakes his head and brushes past me roughly. Then he stops abruptly and faces me. “I thought she was different. I thought she was special. I thought she was the one.”

“I’m sorry,” I cry. I catch his arm and prevent him from moving away. “Max, you have no idea how sorry I am. You don’t have to leave because of me. I’m going to spend the summer with my aunt in Florida. I won’t be here. Don’t leave because of me!”

“Because of you, people think I’m a rapist. They look at me like I’m scum. How can I stay there? How can I face my parents, or look Michael in the eye, or work in my Dad’s office, or hold my head up in that town?”

I stare at him in shock. He has nothing to be ashamed of, no reason to run and hide. I don’t understand why he has to leave town. “You don’t have to feel like that. I told them it was my fault. They know you wouldn’t have slept with me if you’d known.”

There’s a horrible taste in my mouth. This is what Maria tried to tell me, this is why Michael is so furious with me. This is why my parents keep asking me ‘why’. I took Max’s choice away and tricked him into doing something that he feels deep shame for. I was so focused on getting what I wanted that I never considered his feelings.

Max shakes his head. “Like that matters. The whole town thinks they know what happened; they don’t care about the truth. I can’t stay there.”

“I’m sorry,” I say, feebly. There’s nothing I can say to convey how truly, deeply sorry I am. God, I’ve driven him out of town, away from his family and best friends. I reach out again, to comfort him.

He jerks his arm away from me. “It’s far too late for sorry now, Liz.” He slams the bottle of juice down on a shelf and storms out of the store. As he walks out the door, my dad comes in.

Dad watches him go and then turns to me.

“I was just trying to apologize,” I explain feebly. He stares at me uncertainly then goes to pay for the gas.

I return the magazine to the rack and shuffle out the door just in time to see Max’s jeep drive away.

A few minutes later we’re back on the highway again. This time my thoughts are not the angry self-pitying ones I’ve had all week, but ones of deep shame. I have hurt people I loved. I have embarrassed them and disappointed them. I have ruined Max’s reputation and who knows what else. I have destroyed, perhaps forever my friendship with Maria and caused a rift between my family and me that I may never be able to repair.

I feel like dirt.

***
Last edited by nibbles2 on Mon Dec 07, 2009 4:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.


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