Informed consent (M/L ADULT) [COMPLETE]

Finished stories set in an alternate universe to that introduced in the show, or which alter events from the show significantly, but which include the Roswell characters. Aliens play a role in these fics. All complete stories on the main AU with Aliens board will eventually be moved here.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/21/2010

Post by greywolf » Sat May 22, 2010 1:00 am

In 1898 H.G. Wells wrote a novel The War of the Worlds that described a fictional encounter between humans and aliens. For the last forty-five minutes or so a battle had been raging in the Evans living room. It might better be described as a War of the Wills. Strangely enough - in this case - the female in the fight was slowly losing.
The problem was a simple one. Although the female involved was one of the most potentially lethal 4 plus change beings in Chaves County, the male involved had suddenly become THE MOST STUBBORN creature. And of course, there were the defectors.

Her left hand had somehow found its way into his - she believed during the marriage proposal - and it had steadfastly refused to stop intertwining its fingers with his, even as her all-too human brain had explained to him - repeatedly - why marrying him was impossible. Allegiance of her arm was doubtful, and the shoulder suspect as well. So although she could sit there and explain to him - repeatedly - that she would NOT take his dream which had somehow become her dream away from him - that he deserved that sort of a life and she had no reason to believe she could give it to him - she had been unable to actually extract her hand from his and tell him goodbye.

The fact of the matter was, there probably wasn't a cell in the gal's body - outside of the cerebral hemispheres - that wasn't actually rooting for the opposition in this one. Isabel was losing slowly, but she was losing.

"It wouldn't work," said Isabel for about the fortieth time, "First of all, the Sheriff is probably going to lock me up sometime this afternoon."

"That's nonsense. You haven't done anything, and both of your parents are lawyers. They won't let the law do anything to you. So tell me again why won't you promise to marry me?

"Alex - we can't," she said again. "I just can't do that to you. You deserve a great life - and I can't give you that life."

"What's so great about a life without you?" he asked.

'Yeah, and what's so great about a life without Alex? asked her heart - and several other concerned parts of her anatomy.

Eventually even Isabel's brain recognized that she was slowly losing this battle. She needed a truce - a compromise - a negotiated settlement that would allow her to get him to agree to let her go. She simply couldn't bring herself to pull away otherwise. But if she could get an agreement with him by compromising.....

"Alex, I won't accept your proposal but I'll make you a proposal. We will both graduate from school in four months. We are both going to New Mexico State in the Fall. We can get an apartment and live together for four years. If during that time there is any indication that alien-human interaction will be - fruitful - I'll accept your proposal. If there isn't - well - you have to let me go. That's my final offer."

"I don't want to have sex with Isabel Evans," said Alex - apparently forgetting that you can go to Hell for lying too. He was a geek and she was a goddess - He'd love to have sex with Isabel Evans - but he'd rather have sex with Isabel Whitman.

Alex was finally starting to realize that Isabel's resolve was crumbling - and that this might wind up being a rare gold medal for the male of the species. That's why he was still holding out for the happy ever after,

"... what I want is for you to be my wife and to share my life with me - whatever happens or doesn't happen."

"Alexxx....!" she said, willing her damn hand to let go of his - it wasn't happening though and her leg seemed to be huddling up as close as it could to his leg as well. This certainly wasn't going to be easy.

Back up north.....


"You're kidding..."

"Ma-aaaxx," she said, running her fingernails lightly over his abdomen.

"Don't you ever sleep?"

"I've been asleep for a year and a half, Max. Besides.... you are two times ahead of me on this. That's not fair. You've got to let me catch up."

OK, Max was fatigued - but he wasn't THAT fatigued. He was at least able to realize that she could never catch up since she couldn't do it with him either if he were truly comatose.

“Liz – tired I may be, but I somehow don't think that's going to work...”

“Well, not actually catch up – just sort of catch up. Right now you've done it with me four times and I've done it with you twice. That means that I've done it fifty percent of the times you have done it. If we do it one more time, I'll be caught up to three times for your five – that's sixty percent. If you remember the calculus we were doing for the stasis chambers, this eventually comes down to a straight-line function where 'n' equals the number of times I've done it with you and 'n+2' equals the number of times you've done it with me. In the end the linear equation of n/(n+2)= y approaches the mathematical limit of 100% and we'll be equal, with sufficient magnitude of 'n'.”

Max nodded in agreement, too tired to actually remember that Liz had somewhat understated the magnitude of 'n' needed. In fact, the limit approached 100% alright – as 'n' approached infinity.

“Well, OK, I guess...,” he said, “... I want to be fair...”

Fifteen minutes later he would fall rapidly asleep – which had been Liz's intention all along. This time the human intellect – Liz's intellect – had done the right thing. In her telepathic connection to Max she'd seen in Max's brain the misplaced concern and willingness to sacrifice his own wants and needs for what he considered her welfare – the same sort of nonsense that was stopping Isabel from accepting Alex's proposal – and she had decided to make an unmistakable statement – to so thoroughly exhaust Max that he wouldn't have the strength left to second – guess their actions. What was more, she intended to keep Max occupied like this quite a bit in the near future.

Oh, maybe in a few weeks she'd ease up on the poor guy – but only after she was sure that their relationship was thoroughly cemented – about like the Grand Coulee Dam.
Last edited by greywolf on Sat May 22, 2010 2:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/22/2010

Post by greywolf » Sat May 22, 2010 10:29 pm


Philip rolled over in bed and stared at the clock on the side table. It was perhaps axiomatic that good news never arrived at 5:54 AM unannounced at your door, particularly when you were the father of two teenagers - one of whom was wanted by the police on suspicion of kidnapping and the other of whom was showing her independence more and more lately. He rolled out of bed and stumbled to the window where he could look down at the carport. Well, at least the jeep was there so Isabel most likely wasn't involved in this. Still, there was nothing to be gained by putting off bad news. Philip stumbled in to his closet - Diane was already in hers, and put on his robe to go downstairs and see who was at the door.

In the living room Isabel looked up at the sound of the doorbell and frowned. She still had to convince Alex to be sensible - and that was NOT going well - and then confess the enormity of her sins to her parents in keeping the whole alien thing a secret from them for most of the last twelve years. She did NOT need the Sheriff or the FBI coming early - she'd made that plain this morning - and if this was some SWAT team come to use force and perhaps put her loved ones - there was little doubt that Alex was now in that category - at risk, they were at risk of finding out that one of the 'four plus change' most potentially lethal people in the county was not kidding when she'd told them that refraining from interrupting her until she had her chance to say her good-byes was NOT negotiable. Of course, until she could somehow convince her hand to release itself from Alex's hand, she was going to be a little slow getting to the door. In fact, both her parents were going to beat her there.

Philip opened the door and standing before him - dressed in a camouflage hunting outfit - was Jeff Parker. A somewhat embarrassed Nancy was at his side.

"Phil!, I need to speak to your daughter."

"I don't believe she's up yet, Jeff, but even if she was.... What is this all about?"

"Of course she's up - she's been up all night," said Jeff. Nancy just seemed to be looking more embarrassed to Philip and Diane. As Philip was about to invite Jeff to leave he saw his daughter walking toward the front door from the living room, Alex Whitman in tow.

"Just what exactly is going on here," said Isabel angrily when she saw the camouflage outfit - assuming it was a police agency of some sort. She was somewhat taken aback when she recognized the face of Jeff Parker.

Jeff smiled and stepped forward. "I need for you to tell Nancy the truth - so she won''t think I'm insane. Then I need for you to go get Max and Liz - but not until this afternoon though."

Isabel shook her head. OK, maybe the police did know what she was - she couldn't do anything about that - but she wasn't about to turn in her brother.

"I'm afraid I don't know where Max and Liz are, Mr. Parker, and I'm not sure what this 'truth' is that you are talking about."

"The truth, Isabel,... that you are part alien - from the 1947 saucer - and Max and Liz - well they are in the pod-chamber and I told them that you would pick them up this afternoon."

Behind him, Nancy visibly winced and looked at her husband with a concerned expression. He seemed undeterred however and continued to address Isabel.

"Ohh," said the smiling Jeff Parker, grinning at Isabel"... and by the way - you are going to be an aunt."

Diane and Philip watched their daughter's eyes widen with amazement.

"Max and... and Liz?"

Jeff's head nodded.

Before either of Isabel's parents knew what to think, their daughter seemed to be being physically attacked by Alex Whitman.

Isabel felt the hands grasp her at her waist and spin her to face him before lifting her into the air and depositing one of the 'four plus change' most potentially lethal people in the county in the corner of the room - trapping her there with his own body as he looked down at her.

Philip jumped forward to protect his daughter, just in time to hear Alex's words to Isabel.

"You," said Alex, "are SO engaged!"

The broad smile - almost a laugh - and the tears of joy in his daughter's eyes froze Philip to the spot. He saw his daughter's head nod ever so gently and her lips open as she looked up at the gangly young man and spoke.

"You win, Alex. I WILL marry you," she said as she put her arms around his neck and kissed him.
Last edited by greywolf on Sat May 22, 2010 11:18 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/22/2010

Post by greywolf » Tue May 25, 2010 9:20 am

Diane and Philip looked at their daughter. Up until a year and a half ago they'd had more than one late night 'pillow talk' about where Isabel's social life was going. Max simply didn't have any - which they took as shyness and immaturity.

The 'Ice Princess Posse' - the group of girls that Isabel was not just hanging with but threatening to become the leader of - seemed positively malignant. Haughty and superficial - dating guys who were their male mirror images - both Diane and Philip had found their daughter's choices in her high school social life appalling. The saving grace was that her relationships with the dates she did go on had remained so superficial she rarely progressed to a second date. But all that had changed a year and a half ago when her brother had walked out of breakfast and driven up to Albuquerque.

In fact, the only good thing that had come out of this horrible eighteen months was that Isabel had settled down. First her friendship with Maria who was certainly more down-to-earth than anyone in the Princess Posse, but most of all her friendship with Alex Whitman.

Alex was a genuine nice kid and Isabel's low-key but slowly growing relationship with the polite young man was the sort of relationship that they had hoped that their daughter would someday find. Of course the operative word in that sentence was 'someday,' not 'today.'

Well, apparently it had grown faster than they'd expected and neither of the parents was exactly sure if they or Isabel were ready for this step, but apparently Isabel thought she was and it didn't seem like it would be a good idea immediately to fight this proposal. It was - after all - a proposal of marriage - not some proposal that they just shack up in college or something.

As they looked at each other the intuitive bond of the long-married couple - almost like telepathy - seemed to guide them. They'd do what they could to slow this down a lot - but not directly fight it - and when it happened which judging by their daughter's eyes was simply a matter of 'when' rather than 'if' they'd do their best to help the young couple out. Right now, however. they had other things to settle with their daughter.

"Isabel," said Diane, "I think you need to tell us exactly what's going on."

Isabel looked at her parents and backed up slightly into the arms of Alex, as if drawing confidence from his nearness. This wasn't going to be easy. How do you explain to your folks - people who love you - that you've been lying to them for practically your entire life?

Well, apparently the way you do that is truly universal. You put as much of it as possible on your sibling who is not their to defend himself. That's what brothers are for.

"Mom, Dad, I've always wanted to tell you. But when we were real young, Max made my take this stupid sacred vow," she lied.

There. With Alex's arms around her - that hadn't been so bad.

"It started out when I awoke in this cave - when I busted out of a membrane on this machine. A few minutes later Max busted out of the one next to me..."

And strangely, over the next fifteen minutes, Diane and Philips opinion changed about Alex Whitman and Isabel Evans not being ready for this step. It was more what Alex did than anything else. It started when Isabel recounted their first trip into town - the twins English skills still pretty primitive then - but they could read and understand more than they could speak. She and Philip had taken them into a small child's amusement area in town frequented by the tourists - and adjacent to it had been a macabre display of an alien being vivisected. Neither Diane nor Philip had thought much of the cheesy tourist trap - they'd ignored it with the contempt they thought it observed. Both children had not only believed it was real - but interpreted their new parents lack of interest as believing that such actions were routine.

Even after all these years - even now that Isabel understood they hadn't really felt that way - they could feel the pain she felt from those memories - and apparently so could Alex. The young man would hug her when those memories assailed her - just when she needed to be hugged - and caress her - just when she needed to be reassured. The young man was - right before their eyes - using all of his body language - indeed using his body itself - to provide the nonverbal reassurances that their daughter needed to get through telling this story. There was nothing sexual about it - oh, the two parents had no doubt that the sexual part would come - but it was apparent that their daughter derived enormous emotional support and comfort from the lanky young man. By the time she'd told the truth - what is was like growing up as a hidden alien in Roswell - by the time she'd revealed all of the pain and vulnerabilities she had felt being 'different' in a town where the Crash Festival brought every weirdo in the country to town - it was obvious that she still had mental demons from that time - demons that somehow the love of Alex Whitman let her exorcise.

By the end of her story -telling how she had helped supply the pod-chamber for Max and the confrontation with the Sheriff and FBI - they didn't love Isabel any less - and they loved their soon-to-be son-in-law a whole lot more.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/25/2010

Post by greywolf » Thu May 27, 2010 1:09 am

The story - as far as it went at least - was appealing to Nancy Parker. If Isabel and her brother did actually have special powers it at least gave some credence to Jeff's wild story of Liz being alive and well but there was so much it didn't explain.

"But if what you are saying is true..." Nancy started, "... then the last time you -uh - dreamwalked - Liz was months ago and when you last dreamwalked your brother Liz was still comatose. Even if I believed you, I don't understand."

Isabel looked at Nancy Parker and she couldn't help wanting to help the woman. Not only did Isabel love Liz, but for the first time in her life she could truly have empathy - she could imagine her child - that is her and Alex's child - injured and helpless. She sighed deeply and shook her head.

"I don't really have the answer to those questions, Mrs. Parker, but I can show you the parts of it I do know. Take my hand," she asked, reaching out to her, "...and look into my eyes. I'll try to show you some of what happened..."

Perhaps if the circumstances had been different Nancy would have been afraid, but the kindnesses Isabel had done to Liz while she was in a coma - the vulnerability that the young lady had - nestled into Alex Whitmans arms for reassurance. No matter what Isabel was, Nancy couldn't believe she was any sort of a threat to her. She reached out and touched her hand - gazing into her eyes - and the flashes started.

The first flash was Isabel - carrying Max along to try to dreamwalk Liz. She felt Isabel's fear of Liz and the - to her - strange power that Liz had always had over her brother. To Isabel Liz - not she - was truly the alien. She was doing this because she loved her brother and knew that he was hurting but within her own mind, Isabel was afraid - afraid of all humans but especially afraid of Elizabeth Parker. Until she actually entered the girls battered dream-pod and saw the agony and terror in the girls eyes. Her heart went out to the Parker -girl then, seeing the pain she was in and how her brother reacted to the pain. Barriers in Isabel's mind that had been there from her earliest memories started to fall as her pity overcame her prejudice.

The second flash was bittersweet - Isabel smiling down at Liz - radiating love for the young woman that meant so much to her brother and had come to mean so much to Isabel as well. She listened to the young woman speak to her brother....
  • "You're sure about this?" asked Liz nervously...

    "More certain than I've ever been about anything in my whole life, Liz," said Max.

    Liz looked up at Isabel and shrugged her shoulders, a sad little smile on her lips. Isabel looked down on her with obvious approval...and more than a little regret that she hadn't gotten to know the girl years ago....hadn't understood her as well as she had come to understand her these last eight months. More than anything else, she regretted the near-decade she'd been trying her best to keep these two apart.

    Isabel looked at Max, then back at Liz, and with a smile not too different from Liz's started to intone. "Repeat after me.....I, Elizabeth Parker..."

    "I, Elizabeth Parker..."

    "..take thee, Maxwell Evans, as my wedded husband,.."

    "..take thee, Maxwell Evans, as my wedded husband..."
Nancy felt the approval and acceptance that Isabel had felt that day. Whatever happened, and there was great doubt as to what would happen, her brother and her friend would belong to one another for all eternity. In that, at least, there was solace.

The third flash was the most painful of all.
  • “Oh Liz...” Isabel said, her eyes tearing up as she saw the small; and tenuous state of the abyss. She reached for Liz's right hand and held it between hers. “Liz, you've got to fight – you've got to hang on. You just have to....”

    “It's OK, Izzy,” Nancy heard her daughter say. “It's going to happen … and I guess I'm OK with it.”

    “It is NOT OK, Liz. You have to fight this. You are my friend and … Oh God Liz, I don't have that many friends – I can't afford to lose any of them...”

    “Don't worry – all the fear and the pain and the loneliness will be over quickly – it was bound to happen.”

    "It is NOT bound to happen. You've got to fight, Liz. Max is working his butt off - every day - you've just got to give him time...", said Isabel, her eyes watering with tears.

    "It'll be OK, Izzy..." said Liz, holding the sobbing girl close. "I can handle it....thanks to you and Max."

    "But what about me? All those years I could have been your friend - should have been your friend - all the years that I wasted? And my God.... what about Max? I think that you were probably the only reason he ever made this world his own and without you...? Oh God Liz, Max won't even want to go on...."
Nancy felt the horror that Isabel had experienced that last time she'd dreamwalked Liz. Whatever else Isabel Evans was she was as human as anyone else - and she loved Liz dearly. She looked at the girl and spoke.

"I guess I don't understand - you saw Liz just fading away. How did she survive? And how - well I guess that would be obvious - what I mean is when did she become pregnant?"

Isabel looked at Nancy and shrugged her shoulders. "Well, if she just came back to self-awareness today..... well, she and Max were married. I imagine they were overdue a honeymoon."

"But how would she know so soon?"

"That wouldn't actually be that hard. Max could detect the aura of a new life - within a couple of hours after - uh - conception."

"It's actually a little more complicated than that," said Jeff.

Suddenly all the eyes in the room turned in his direction.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/26/2010

Post by greywolf » Fri May 28, 2010 11:55 pm

Jeff's eyes looked back – mostly at Nancys eyes and those of Philip and Diane as he started to talk.

“It would seem that – like Isabel said – Max has cared for Liz since early in elementary school....”

Isabel's head nodded slowly, and Jeff continued.

“Well, by the end of elementary school apparently Liz cared for him as well. Early in seventh grade – when they announced the first school dance – Liz apparently did her level best – in a clumsy seventh grade sort of way I suppose – to get Max to invite her to the dance. Well, that didn't happen. Perhaps Max wasn't mature enough to realize she was even making the attempt – boys mature slower than girls and Max was handicapped by all the time he'd missed while he was in the incubator of the pod until her was six years old – perhaps he knew she was making the attempt and was frightened of being discovered or – Max being Max – perhaps he simply didn't want Liz to go through the pain of finding out about him and being repelled by him. Who knows, maybe he just couldn't bear to be rejected by her as he thought he would be – according to Liz and Isabel, he loved her even back then. But anyway, our daughter,” said Jeff nodding to Nancy, “... decided she would never 'embarrass herself' – her words not mine – by ever giving Max any obvious encouragement ever again. That apparently didn't keep her from falling more and more in love with him as junior high school became high school – but Lizzy never pushed and Max never gave any indication to her that he wanted to be anything but a lab partner and a friend. Hell, Liz thinks he never really believed they could be anything more than that, but there the situation stayed … until Liz's accident – at which time restoring our daughter to health became the most important thing in this world...” Jeff shook his head and smiled, “...perhaps in ANY world, to Max.”

As a tearful Isabel nodded again – and snuggled back into Alex's arms, Jeff continued.

“Liz thinks she almost went insane in what she calls the abyss. She knew she existed – knew she'd been in that accident – but it seemed like several eternities had passed. Finally Isabel and Max were there. Of course Liz knew it was a dream – even Isabel and Max admitted that in her dream – that they were dreamwalking her. Isabel she couldn't really figure out – they hadn't exactly been the closest of friends...”

“That means I did whatever I could to keep Max away from her,” admitted Isabel. “I was afraid she'd find out the truth and tell the world...”

“Conversely,” continued Jeff, “.... Liz thought it was entirely reasonable that if she was having a dream – a fantasy – about someone, that the someone would be Max. It was hardly the first time.

The problem – from Max's perspective – was when he figured out that the dreamwalks themselves were what was sustaining Liz's mind – keeping her from succumbing to her coma. Isabel could dreamwalk from long distances – carrying Max's mind with her. Max's range was measured in inches – a couple feet at most. But if he could dreamwalk her on one shift and Isabel could dreamwalk her on a different shift, it would buy time – time for Max to either find a way to heal her or – failing that – to perhaps get the pods working again and put both he and Liz into suspended animation which would keep her alive until a cure could be found. Originally he intended to watch over her pod himself until there was a cure, then bring her out when she could be cured. But then Lizzy sort of got the best of him.”

“I'm not sure I understand that,” said Nancy.

“Me neither,” said Philip. Diane just shrugged her shoulders in agreement.

“Contrary to the Albuquerque police department and Liz's paranoid father, Max was anything but a sex predator. He knew that he needed to be sleeping at Liz's side to make the dreamwalking work and he didn't need to be a mind reader – although I guess he sort of is – to decide that coming to me and asking if I minded if he spent his nights on the mattress alongside Liz wasn't going to work. The only real alternative was to kidnap her, but there was one big problem with that – the way his parents had raised him.”

“How we raised him?” asked Diane.

“Yeah, breaking a federal law was no big deal – not if it would save Liz's life – but doing anything – anything at all – that might well, I guess dishonor would be the best term – dishonor Liz – he just couldn't bring himself to do that. So even though he had no intention in the world of actually consummating it – he asked her to marry him. That way when Liz got back to normal – knowing she had been diapered, given bed baths, and given physical therapy by Max – alone with him for months or even years – she could at least tell herself that he was her husband at the time. He at least would know that he'd done everything possible to offset the social effect of placing her in what we used to call a 'compromising' position. You see, he never meant to do anything that couldn't be undone. He didn't want to put Liz in a position where she couldn't retreat from the whole alien thing and – I suppose – didn't really think that he could ever be accepted by her once she knew about his difference. Liz, however, surprised him.”

“But...she was in a coma..?” said Nancy.

“She was in a coma, but she was in a dream some of the time in the coma and she was dreaming about being married to Max. She knew it was a dream – knew she was in a coma – and was pretty sure she was dying. Liz figured as long as she was dreaming – and was dreaming about being married to Max – I get the impression not for the very first time – and she knew that she might not have much time left – well, Liz decided to have just one hell of a honeymoon in that dream. I mean, who could blame her – like the condemned guy getting a last request. Max had some qualms – since he was pretty sure she didn't believe his consciousness was even in there – but... well, I guess when properly motivated our daughter can be pretty persuasive. She persuaded Max – just in the dreamworld of course.

Max was toiling 16 or 18 hours a day – probably two thirds of that involving maintaining Liz physically – but he never let the – uh – honeymooning part carry over into the physical world. Max was determined that he was going to save her and determined that – when he did – Liz would still be a virgin and would still have the ability to just walk away from the whole alien business. What Liz's honeymooning DID do, however, was to make Max start dreaming about being accepted in the real world like Liz accepted him in the abyss. He really didn't think that was possible, of course, but he started thinking about it – hoping about it.

Eventually he decided that if Liz went into the stasis chamber – assuming he got them working that is – he'd go in to. When they awoke he'd be there – still whatever age she was – and that then she could make the choice. He had already given up over a year of his life but she was – in his mind – his wife, at least until she told him otherwise, and he was going to give up his whole life to go to the future with her on the off-chance – he thought - she would really accept him. Of course there really wouldn't have been any risk of her doing anything BUT accepting him – not according to Lizzy. But that option never got played out. Liz says that Max did amazing things in the field of astrophysics – not just learning everything that is known about time and something called entropy and how it must work, but coming up with some theoretical stuff that's way ahead of what Earth science knows about it. But he wasn't going to be able to get those machines working in time. She knew it – and he knew it – and with each passing day he could see his chance of success slipping away. It didn't really matter to Liz – she hadn't believed that any part of the dream was real – but as she saw the reaction Max was having to her impending passing – well it scared her. What, she asked herself, if she was wrong? She was convinced that Max was so devoted to her that – well, the phrase he used was that he wouldn't let her pass into the great darkness alone. What, she asked herself, if she was wrong? She loved her husband – she loved even the thought of Max being her husband – so much that she couldn't take the chance. She could picture herself ceasing to have self-awareness and – over the next six months or year – dying. If Max wasn't able to get the stasis chambers to work in time – and she doubted he would – she really thought he'd take his own life – assuming he was real of course – even if he'd promised her otherwise. She couldn't bear that thought – unlikely as she thought it was – and she wanted something that would keep him from doing it – something, she said, that would 'compel Mr. Responsibility to not follow' her into the darkness. So on the last time she was self-aware before this morning, over three months ago now, she did the oldest trick in the book. Like Eve with Adam, she lied to him.”

“Lied?” asked Nancy.

“Yes. Our daughter told Max that she didn't want to just disappear like she'd never lived. She wanted something to be left behind. Not just a picture in a high school yearbook, in memoriam, she wanted a part of her to continue to live. She told Max that he needed to promise her – by the love that he had for her and the vows they had made – that he'd conceive a child by her.”

“He'd do what?” asked Diane. “But how would that work – if she died?”

“The incubator part of the pods Max had figured out, and Liz knew that. As she approached death, he was supposed to use his powers to take the fetus from her and plant it in the incubator – to take it out when it was old enough to survive on its own and raise it in memory of her. It was all a ruse, of course. It was about saving Max – not about Liz at all – at least that's what she thought. So Max waited – until Liz's next fertile period – and then did – in response to his dying wife's request – something he'd really had no intention of doing.”

“Omigawd,” said Isabel, you mean that's how...?”

Jeff nodded his head.

“So it's not going to take me nine months to be an aunt? More like six? That is way cool...,” said a smiling Isabel.

“So had not Liz just – by lucky accident – woken up, Max would still be in that cave working away trying to save Liz – planning on all three of them going in suspended animation if he could figure out how to do it?” asked Philip.

“Actually, it's a little more complicated than that.” said Jeff. “You see, Liz wouldn't have awakened if it hadn't been for the pregnancy. As the baby was going through its own development it was closely connected with Liz – still is I guess – and it sensed the defects in her. Like its father, it can manipulate molecules and can heal and – well among other things it can apparently stimulate its mothers stem cells to grow a new reticular activating system. The baby cured Liz – among other things.”

“Among other things?” asked Nancy.

“Well, Liz thinks it's just an evolutionary thing – the baby does better if its mother survives – and so it restored what – to the baby's genome – are the things that will ensure it's mama's survival. Like a reticular activating system – telekinesis – the ability to powerblast. It wasn't really anything it consciously did – more just like instinct. Liz joked about it upgrading her hardware to homo sapiens 2.0. Liz isn't just going to be OK – she's going to have powers something like Max does.”

“Wow!” said Nancy.

“Wow!” said Diane and Philip simultaneously.

Isabel just smiled – cuddled up in Alex's arms and already planning a baby shower for Liz – already settling in to Aunt Izzy mode.

“I know, considered in the aggregate it's quite a list of transgressions – Max missing a couple of years of school, violating a court order, kidnapping, getting a comatose girl pregnant – but when you consider each of those factors individually – well, I can't really disagree with any of them. Max did what he had to do – to keep faith with the person he loved. Liz did too, for that matter. I have to admit – this morning I could easily have killed your son. Tonight – damn – I don't know that there is a finer young man for my daughter anywhere in the universe. Hell, he even offered to use his powers to put the baby in the incubator and let Liz get back to her normal life. He said he'd take full responsibility for raising it himself.”

“He'll do no such thing,” screamed the three women simultaneously, “... that is no way to birth a baby,”

“...and I know that by personal experience,” said Isabel indignantly.

“Yeah, I believe Liz was going to point that out to him,” said Jeff. “In fact, I'm sure she already has....”

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/28/2010

Post by greywolf » Sat May 29, 2010 5:47 pm

"Speaking of our daughter," said Nancy, "...our only child who I have not seen for six months - have not seen her with her eyes open for over a year and a half - I think it's probably time you took me to see her and her new semi-legal husband."

Jeff didn't quite wince. "Now - I'm thinking - probably wouldn't be the best time to do that."

"And exactly why not?" asked a determined looking Nancy.

Jeff smiled at Isabel. "Uh, maybe it would be better if you and Alex went over to our place and got some clothes for Liz from her room? Wait a minute," he said fishing in his pocket, "I'll get you a house key."

Isabel's eyes twinkled. "Why do I get the feeling they aren't going to let us hear the good part, Alex?" she asked. She shook her head at the offered key. "Don't bother, I can handle the lock. Well, Alex, we've got our orders. Can I trust you to behave yourself alone with me in a bedroom in an empty house?"


"Well good - at least one of us has some will power," said Isabel, allowing him to open the door for her. He blushed real well. "But when we get back we need to talk about how we handle the police and FBI..."

All four parents nodded their heads.

"And then," said Alex, "...I'll show you how to hack in to the New Mexico State University computer system - and put our names at the head of the list for married student housing in the Fall."

Isabel's smile seemed to light the room. She blushed pretty well herself.

As the jeep putted off down the street Nancy turned to her husband.

"OK Jeff, out with it..."

"Well, it seems like our daughter and her new husband had their first lovers quarrel this morning."

"Max was angry at Liz?" asked Diane.

"No, more like Liz was frustrated with Max. Unfortunately when she awoke in this pod-chamber thing and realized that really had been Max in the dreams, Liz was sort of awestruck. I think it was about the time that she felt the little bulging in her lower abdomen. Anyway, Liz let slip that she really hadn't believed - not even when she'd told him that she wanted the baby - that any of that was real. She said she had just been sort of hedging her bets. She swears she didn't mean anything by it - just the amazement - but that wasn't how Max took it.

In fairness to Max, the guy had been up for about twenty hours and I don't think he'd gotten much sleep the week before - he'd been working the science and math books pretty hard trying to figure out a way to save Liz and her sudden awareness - and that statement - hit him kind of hard."

"What do you mean, ' hit him kind of hard'?" asked Diane in her sternest lawyer interrogation manner.

"She didn't MEAN to upset him, of course. What he'd been hoping was that once she eventually did wake up - she'd have decided that he really wasn't all that frightening and might even want to stay married. But when she said that she hadn't believed it was real, Max suddenly realized that she hadn't believed the vows were real either. Or that what she was doing when she said she wanted him to conceive a child with her was real either."

"Poor Max," said Nancy. Diane nodded her head in agreement.

"Well, at that point Max said that he was sorry he got her pregnant ...," continued Jeff.

Both Nancy and Diane winced at that. Jeff noted that Philip didn't change his expression. He didn't get it either. Apparently it was some female thing like their reaction to Max's suggestion that the baby be incubated until term. It hadn't really seemed to him like Max had committed any major faux pas either, but that sure wasn't the way that Liz had seen it.

"... - of course at the time he didn't know the baby had cured her - but then neither did she then and apparently Liz started crying and that was when Max told her that he could transfer the fetus to the incubator and she could go back to her regular life - that he certainly didn't expect to hold her to her vows - and that if after the baby was born she didn't want anything to do with it he'd take care of it."

"He didn't!!!?" said Nancy.

"The little son of a bitch!" said Diane, which coming from the guy's mom kind of struck Jeff as funny, although he kept a straight face.

Yep. This was definitely an 'X' chromosome sort of thing. Looking at Phil, he thought Max's dad probably thought his son was trying to do the right thing too. Apparently it wasn't though.

"Hey - lighten up. The guy was dead on his feet - and he'd been taking care of her - and extremely well too, I might add - all by himself for six months. They had a little misunderstanding - which was why Max was a little late getting to pick up the supplies. The guy must have carried damn near two hundred pounds of stuff a quarter mile up the side of the mountain three times. He was a little confused, that's all."

"But to argue with her - when she was in that condition..." started Diane.

"All he was trying to do was to give Liz the option - now that she knew it was for real - to back out if she wanted to. That's hardly a capital crime."

"But you don't understand, Jeff," said Nancy. "At that point in a pregnancy you have all these hormones going through you - you need nurturing, not uncertainty."

"It's OK. I'm pretty sure at least. Liz told me before I left that she and Max were going to kiss and make up - more than that actually - and that she was going to make crystal clear that she had every intention of honoring those vows. I believe her exact words were that she was going to have sex with her husband and he was going to enjoy it and he was never for the rest of his life going to doubt that she cared for him. That's close to her words anyway.

"So by now I think Max is probably already getting some badly needed sleep - from exhaustion if nothing else. Liz said to have Isabel come pick them up this afternoon - she thinks Max will be better rested then and much more reassured about her feelings toward him."

Diane and Nancy looked at each other, both tearful but smiling.

"We'll have to get that marriage legal," said Diane, "...even if we have to figure out some illegal way to do it."

"Then it might be fun to have another one - just to be sure. Even if Max still doesn't need reassurance, I'd like to be there," said Nancy. "You'll have to have Isabel show you what it was like when they got married in that abyss - it was so sweet - but it would be nice for them to say their vows with friends and family..."

"...and a couple of tearful mothers to enjoy it," said Diane nodding her head.
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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 05/29/2010

Post by greywolf » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:15 am

It was three hours later as Jeff and Philip clicked the mouse to start the file loading. The results were prompt.
  • "Hello there," said the smiling figure on the computer LCD monitor, "... you don't know me, but my name is Isabel Evans - or if you are hearing this after this June, it'll be Isabel Whitman," she continued as the young man joined her in the image. "Alex and I are like a lot of high school seniors who will graduate this Spring; young, in love, wanting to be with each other and to go off to college and start our lives. Wanting to get degrees, and find jobs , and...," Isabel blushed as she smiled at Alex,"... someday start a family. Unfortunately, if you are seeing this - well that dream of ours has been interrupted. It has been interrupted by YOUR government interfering with our opportunity to do that - and if that has happened, it's really unfair. Unfair to me, but most of all unfair to Alex, because you see... Alex is no different than you are. So hopefully, even if they have me locked up, Alex will be free, because Alex is just a real sweet guy - not a threat to anyone."

    "That's not really true, dear," said the image of Alex. "Information is always a threat to those who want to keep secret what they are doing. The American public can sometimes be spooked by the demagogues - but not for all that long. In 1942 we were scared like that," he said, the screen changing to old black and white movies of the Japanese Americans being loaded into Army trucks and hauled off to internment camps, "...and you allowed our government to do something we've been ashamed of ever since. As long as they don't lock me up, I'm going to keep putting out information on this net - keep the unfairness of this in the public eye - keep fighting this in the courts and in the most important court of all - the court of public opinion - because like with those Americans of Japanese descent, you are a good American citizen - and a good person. You are also the woman I love. - even if you are just a teeny weeny bit different. The point is a difference like what Isabel has - like the amount of melanin per square inch of skin or the presence or absence of an epicanthic fold - or even whether you originated somewhere far far away, that stuff doesn't make any difference. What makes a difference is the kind of person you are. Isabel is a fine person - I should know, she's my fiance - even if she happens to be part alien."

    The small image of Isabel smiled at the small image of Alex lovingly. "I guess I better show them a few stupid alien tricks - well, alien-human hybrid tricks anyway, so they'll understand what you mean..."

    The Isabel-figure held her hand out toward a glass of water and it wobbled through the air toward her.

    "This is telekinesis - moving objects with your mind, and this is molecular manipulation," she said, smiling as, to the Alex-figures obvious amusement, the water changed color rapidly.
Philip clicked the mouse and froze the replay of the short video. He'd already seen it twice but it still amazed him.

“They are good – really good at that.”

Jeff nodded his head in agreement. “Either one of them,” he said, “could pass for a professional actor, but the way that Alex directed and produced this...”

“And wrote it...”

“...And wrote it as well,” said Jeff nodding again.

Alex and Isabel had returned from picking up Liz's clothes an hour and a half previously. For all Isabel had made risque' jokes it was obvious that the couple hadn't tarried in Liz's bedroom, and that most of their discussions must have been about how to counter the threat to Isabel and Max posed by the police and FBI.

“Do you actually think it will work?” asked Philip.

“I don't know why not...,” said Jeff, “...You saw the three versions of this that Alex recorded. He says he can easily set these up to be released to multiple sites on the internet – either immediately by a coded trigger he would send them, or after 72 hours if he DOES NOT send the sites a different coded message. Sort of like a deadman's switch on a train. The only problem I can see is if the federal government didn't really mind taking the heat – or didn't believe it would actually happen. I think that when he shows them the sample program they are going to have to kick the decision up to a fairly high level before they find someone willing to pull down all that adverse PR.”

“Actually, that's not what I'm really too worried about. Even before this I was reasonably confident that Diane and I could keep them tied up in the courts if they tried to lock up Isabel or Max...”

“Don't forget Liz and the baby – they would probably be considered equally alien by the government now.”

“Actually, no. If anything it makes it a lot harder for the government to try anything. Because Liz ISN'T 'not from around here,' and the baby was conceived right here in New Mexico, they can't pretend that they aren't US citizens. Despite Alex's little propaganda clips there, the US has come a long ways since the days after Pearl Harbor. By the time we invoke the Civil Rights Act and a few other things, the police and FBI are going to have a hard time doing anything legally. I hope that when they see Alex's creation they don't even try, because while it may get the kids off the hook with the government, those clips would open Isabel and Alex up to every kook and crazy like we see every year around the Crash Festival. But that really wasn't what I was referring to. What I was wondering was whether or not my childrens marriages would work.”

“You are worried about Isabel and Alex?”

“Actually, I'm really worried less about them. I WAS worried about Isabel being an Ice Princess in high school, but that was because I was really afraid it was real – not just a ruse she was using to hide what she was from the world. Much as I'm going to hate to lose my little girl, Alex is good for her. Not only is she happier than I've ever seen her, they make quite a team. Even the thing they worked out about Max and Liz's marriage...”

Jeff nodded his head. The two teenagers had come up with an amazing scheme to get Liz and Max's marriage legal. According to the marriage laws of the State of New Mexico, any ordained minister could perform a marriage. Once the marriage was performed, the ordained minister had 90 days to get the marriage certificate to the county clerk. Alex had found a site on the web for the Universal Life Church that allowed you to get an ordination certificate simply by applying for it. It was almost too easy. Isabel had applied – Alex had hacked their website to backdate the certificate back to the day before Isabel had done the marriage, and Isabel now had an ordination certificate that showed she was an ordained minister in the Universal Life Church two days before she'd actually married Max and Liz in the abyss. They'd downloaded the New Mexico Marriage Certificate template and filled it out. This afternoon they'd get the signatures of Max and Liz and have Alex and Nancy – both of whom had connected with Isabel to witness the ceremony – sign as witnesses, and they still had almost a half week to get the paperwork in to the county clerk. Once the county clerk accepted it, the marriage was totally legal in the state of New Mexico - legally valid from the very day she'd lead them through their vows.

“So what ARE you worried about then?” asked Jeff.

“I guess .. Max and Liz,” said Philip.
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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 06/02/2010

Post by greywolf » Wed Jun 02, 2010 11:47 pm

"My concern is - well I guess maybe it's that girls sort of grow up faster and I'm only now - barely - starting to accept that Isabel is adult enough to actually accept Alex's proposal. I mean - look at them - they are just ... beautiful ... together, but a week ago I'd have never believed..."

"Well, a week ago Isabel was hiding a serious fact from you - a fact that had shaped her whole childhood. It appears she had some misconceptions of her own that Alex helped her to resolve," said Jeff, smiling as he nodded at the two teenagers back in the Evanses home office. There was a New Mexico State University Computer being hacked right now - apparently Alex had meant what he'd said about getting them to the top of the married student housing list.

"But that's part of the problem. Diane and I knew the kids were socially immature for their apparent ages - even when we first adopted them. You kind of expect six year old kids to be potty-trained. To find out that they were - for all intents and purposes - newborns."

"Newborns who were able to walk within hours of their births. Sort of newborn six year-olds who rapidly caught up, though," replied Jeff.

"Physically, certainly. But mentally and emotionally...?"

"You're a lawyer, Phil. Probably more than anyone you realize some people never do grow up - at least not emotionally. Some people fold before any sort of emotional stress - others rise to the challenge.

Don't get me wrong, I don't fault you for having doubts. Hell, up until a few hours ago I'd given up on my daughter and thought your son was the most evil person on this planet. But Max never gave up on her. Not despite my doubts - not despite his own doubts. Whatever other deficiencies he might have the concept of 'quit' just wasn't in his vocabulary when it came to helping Liz. It didn't matter if he was slandered - legally restrained.

From what Liz told me he was willing to change the whole science of astrophysics and if he couldn't do it in time - and Liz actually thought that if he'd had a few more years he might have even succeeded at that - Liz thought your son was fixing to storm the gates of Heaven or Hell to get Liz back."

"Yeah, but his total experience in life is only about twelve years and a year and a half of that..."

"A year and a half of that he was either fighting insurance companies, fighting me, or living in a cave taking care of my daughter," Jeff finished. "And Liz herself had a whole sixteen and a half years of experience before the accident and since then has been in a coma - broken only by brief periods of self-awareness where all she had was the company of Max or Isabel.

You are right, Phil, If you look at just the numbers - it's real scary. If age or even length of experience were the only criteria, those two wouldn't stand a chance. Heck, half of marriages end in divorce. For teen marriages, it's almost 80%. But I saw my daughter this morning, Phil, and I saw your son, and I'm telling you that - despite some problems that they need to hash out - that I think they will hash out those problems successfully.

These kids have been challenged in a way that few teen relationships have been. Each time those kids considered carefully and then acted - each time choosing to put the needs of the other one above their own immediate wants or needs. That is not the kind of behavior you find in immature people."

"No, I guess not, but they have so little experience."

"Yeah, well what did the guy say? Experience is what enables you to know you've just made a mistake - again? Max and Liz have been tested in the crucible and I think they've changed. I never knew Max all that well before, but I know my daughter has changed. What she went through made her more mature - more determined - more - well, more like Max."

"I guess there is something to that," conceded Philip. "A lot of people with - say twenty-years - experience seem to just act like they've had one year's experience twenty times. And a lot of divorces I see - it seems like the commitment just wasn't there to begin with."

"If I hadn't seen how Liz was changed this morning I'd be more worried about her than Max, actually," said Jeff. "Max apparently has been obsessed with Liz most of his life - the Albuquerque police got that part of it right at least but it hadn't been about sex - or at least Max had never let himself believe it would ever come to that - more just about caring for her. You wouldn't believe how much she regrets those years when she might have been closer to him if she'd just not been so adamant that he make the first move."

"Well, when she finally did make the move... Wow - a grandkid. How do you feel about that?"

"Phil, Liz is happy and in love and looking forward to giving your son a child.

Six hours ago I would have been overjoyed if I'd believed she'd ever look at me and say 'Daddy' again. When - to my amazement - she actually did that I totally misinterpreted what had been going on. I told her I'd take care of everything - see that Max was punished - help her get rid of the pregnancy. We all make mistakes, but that one was sure a doozy.

Say, did I tell you about what she said to me next after that? It was, 'Max, dear, would you please step outside for a moment? I need to have a few words alone with my father..'. I only had to see the look in her eyes and to her the tone of her voice to realize that I was in one HELL of a lot of trouble," said a smiling Jeff Parker.

"The very fact that she forgave me for that faux pas showed a lot of maturity - and a lot more charity than I deserved. Since she actually did forgive me THAT stupidity, I figure the least I can do is to do everything possible to help the two of them. I figure we can fix the upstairs up for a place for the two of them to live - convert the room across the hall into a nursery - you know, help them put their lives back together."

"Diane and I will be glad to help. At least Max was doing well enough when he dropped out of school they gave him credit for the courses he was taking sophomore year. He'll only be two years behind."

"Liz too. She was thinking that with all the advanced mathematics and physics the two of them were working on they could probably just test out of AP calculus and AP physics. With online and summer school they could graduate only a year late."

"Well, we can certainly help out with getting both of them through college after that. Babysitting too - we never had any real infants before. Diane will love that part of it...."

While the guys were making plans for construction and painting and talking about their soon-to-be common grandchild, Diane and Nancy were in the kitchen, fixing something for a homecoming dinner.

It's a curious fact that 'comfort' food can sometimes be as comforting to the food preparers as it is for the people who eat it. That was the case today, anyway. Lunch hadn't even been served yet, but both Nancy and Diane were already collaborating on preparing their respective kids favorite comfort food. That was lasagna for Liz and a ridiculously hot chili - loved by both Diane's children - for Max. Jeff had mentioned that Liz had some muscle atrophy. That's not really the same as being malnourished, but Nancy's instinctive reaction was that her daughter needed some 'fattening up,' especially now that she was 'eating for two.' Diane's reaction upon hearing about the 'supplies' that Isabel had provided for Max's consumption - something called MRE's that were apparently military surplus packaged meals supplemented by liberal supplies of ramen noodles and single-serve macaroni and cheese packets, was one of total horror. Her child had actually LIVED on that crap for six months. Clearly Max needed a good meal as well. So that's why both women were in the kitchen - readying a coming-home feast.

While they were at it, the two soon-to-be grandmothers were doing some bonding of their own.
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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 06/02/2010

Post by greywolf » Mon Jun 07, 2010 11:54 pm

The kitchen was fast filling up with the aroma of food. A LOT of food. Food enough to feed a small army - with leftovers for a couple of platoons.

Both Diane and Nancy realized that this was nervous energy coming out - not that realizing it made it any easier to cope with. But Jeff had convinced them that they really should keep to plan - and besides they didn't know the precise route that they needed to get to this pod-chamber thing anyway. Cooking was probably better than hitting the Margaritas heavily, so cooking they were, counting each passing minute.

They'd made a quick run to the local market and both were now getting down to more serious business. Diane had roasted the skin off a number of chilis - Anaheim and Poblano mostly - and was now dicing them and a few jalapenos while four pounds of chili-grind beef and a couple of minced onions and garlic cloves were cooking up in the bottom of the largest cooking pot she owned. On the next burner over, Nancy had 2 pounds of beef and 3 pounds of italian sausage - the latter removed from its skins - starting to brown. It would before long be joining a rather large pile of mozzarella and parmesan cheese that was sitting next to the ricotta. Had their actually been any vampires in the county, the aroma of garlic coming from the kitchen would have likely driven them completely out of the state.

Chances were that even the two mothers knew this was all over-kill. It didn't matter. It let them keep busy and avoid watching the clock and trying to give the second-hand their own telekinetic nudge to get the time to pass a little faster. It distracted them until they could get their children back, and that was enough. It also provided some pretty good bonding time of their own as well.

"I have to admit," said Nancy, "...before I saw Isabel do those things I had convinced myself that Jeff had gone completely insane. It's still hard for me to believe that I'm really getting my daughter back. If it wasn't that Isabel really does have special powers I'd still be wondering if Jeff hadn't just slipped a cog."

"You know, I've always known there was something those two were holding back on me - but this? Wow!," said Diane, smiling as she looked through the doorway where she could see Alex sitting at the computer keyboard and apparently getting whatever he was working on done despite Isabel's distracting habit of ensuring that some part of her body was in contact with his on pretty much a continuous basis. Well, he was a great guy and - scary as that thought seemed - would be a welcome addition to their suddenly growing family. "Don't believe for a moment what she said about this all being Max's fault. Those two always blame the other when their sibling isn't there to defend themselves. It's just as likely that the 'sacred vow' thing was all Isabel's idea - in fact it sounds a whole lot more like her than it does Max."

"Well, I guess I can understand you being vexed with them for not telling you the whole truth but - considering everything - I couldn't be much more happy with either of them."

"I'm not really that upset," said Diane, "... it's just more that - well, I wish I'd somehow put all those little hints together years ago. I could have been more reassuring to them. But to tell the truth, I was just so damn happy to have them.

Philip and I both wanted kids but – law school was expensive so we put off having kids while we were in college. Then there was law school itself and being editor of the law school review and then I had this really great offer for a prestigious firm. Finally, we decided it was time,” Diane looked down and shook her head, “no, that's not really fair. Philip had been suggesting during our last year in law school but I kept putting him off. Finally I decided it was time and went off the pill and waited for the pregnancy...and it didn't happen. I thought it had because my menstrual periods stopped – but it hadn't happened.... and never would. We went in to a fertility specialist and he made the diagnosis - primary infertility due to premature ovarian failure. Turns out not everyone's biological clock keeps ticking all that long – not even until you are thirty years old. I was devastated.

Phil never said a word that could even be misconstrued as blaming me for waiting too long – and somehow that only seemed to make it worse. I'd known he wanted us to start our family earlier and I blamed myself. That's when our marriage almost broke up. It wasn't Phil's fault. I think that subconsciously I was actually trying to drive him away. It wasn't that I didn't love him – I'll always love him – but I think that I thought if he divorced me he'd go find someone younger – someone still fertile – that could give him the family he wanted. We wound up in joint counseling with a well-recommended therapist up in Albuquerque but it really didn't seem to be doing any good.

Ironically, we were driving back from the therapist in Albuquerque that evening when our headlights hit these two naked little kids walking along the roadside. Somehow they both just melted or hearts. We fostered them for a year and by that time somehow all the troubles between us had faded. We were a family and have been ever since – at least up until Liz's accident. But I really believe Max and Isabel saved my marriage – and probably my life. I only wish I'd been a good enough mother to realize what all those little clues meant. They might have had a happier childhood.”

“Well, Isabel seems happy enough today,” said Nancy, smiling as she looked back to where Isabel and Alex were still working. “... and Max? You must have raised him pretty well for him to turn out to be the fine young man he is. Of course I'm not biased just because he's my son-in-law, you understand.

And Diane, you don't need to feel guilty about Philip. He loves those kids every bit as much as if they were his biological kids – that's obvious. He couldn't be prouder of Isabel and once he gets over the shock of all this – he's going to realize he has three kids now – and a grandkid too before very long.
And Diane, even if you'd decided to have children earlier there's no certainty it would have happened. Sometimes things just happen. Liz was not supposed to be an only child, you know....”

“She wasn't?”

“No. We wanted a large family but Liz's pregnancy – well there was a molar pregnancy with it. They thought they'd gotten it all after Liz was born but my testing kept coming back positive. I'd developed something called choriocarcinoma and I went through chemotherapy twice. Eventually they said I had no real choice. I had a hysterectomy which – fortunately – was curative. But with it went any chance for siblings for Liz.

We probably should have adopted too, but we just sort of decided to just 'be glad for the child God had given us,' as Jeff once said. And we were glad too – and then Liz's accident happened. I never really lost hope – I'm not sure why not – but I'm pretty sure that Jeff did. These last few months – I knew I was losing him too. So you see, Diane, it's not just your marriage that your finding those two wonderful little kids walking down that road saved – it's mine too.”

“Aren't you at all concerned about their ages – Max and Liz, I mean - and the pregnancy?”

"Of course I am. But worrying about my daughter never waking up again for the last year and a half sure puts a little thing like a high school pregnancy in perspective. Besides, we are going to be helping them all we can. Jeff has already redesigned the whole floor that Liz's room is on in his mind about three times - complete with either blue or pink nurseries, depending on which he thinks are grandchild will be at the moment. And to tell the truth, Diane, when I consider how hard Max worked at this - how dedicated he was to try to help LIz. OK, so this wasn't EXACTLY the way he expected to help her but - well who knows.....? Perhaps it was destiny that they get to where they are now all along. "

"Well, maybe it was. To tell the truth, I'm not sure that we would have ever gotten the truth out of Max - or Izzy - if Liz's accident hadn't happened. Maybe somethings are just meant to be... All I know for sure is that I can hardly wait until it's time for Isabel and Alex to go pick them up. I really need to see both of them," said a tearful - but smiling - Diane.

Nancy nodded her head. She was starting to cry too - just the onions and peppers no doubt.

FBI Regional Office
El Paso, Texas

Agent-in-charge Donovan was minding his own business reading one of myriad recent directives from the Justice Department in Washington DC. As the pager on his belt started to buzz, he frowned. He'd worn it for about five months and tested it at least once a week. It had never - up until this time - had a false alarm.

He turned to his computer and clicked on the program that allowed him to view what was going on in the sensitive materials portion of the record room. The two hidden cameras gave him an excellent view of the two men inside. Jaime Sanchez was - for his experience - as fine an FBI agent as Donovan had ever found, and Jim Valenti was both an old friend and highly respected lawman. Apparently neither one of them were very good burglars however.

Donovan watched them extract THOSE files from the sensitive materials section and head for the copying room. He shook his head sadly and stood up. If he moved quickly he could catch them just as they started to copy the records.

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Re: Informed consent AU M/L ADULT 06/09/2010

Post by greywolf » Wed Jun 09, 2010 10:51 am

Back northeast - at the podchamber - there was also something interesting going on. Superficially it seemed quiet enough, Liz was curled up in Max's embrace - both of them asleep - in the dim light of one overhead luminescent panel near the storage area. Even in the dream-orb it was rather quiet. There too Liz rested in Max's arms, both of the two quite content after Liz had informed her new husband in no uncertain terms that he had a contract - and she expected the son of a couple of lawyers to understand that. He had - finally - decided to just shut his mouth and be grateful for his good fortune and worry about 'fair' some other time. The interesting part was actually what was going on in their auras - a part of the spectrum different from the dream plane. They were being analyzed.

There was an ongoing political and philosophic debate about when a fetus became 'a human being.' By the stictest definition, this fetus might never be considered a human being - at least not a homo sapiens 1.0 . But what it most certainly was was alive - and like most organisms - evolution had shaped it in such a way that it would do its best to stay that way, at least long enough to itself reproduce.

That is not to say that the fetus was yet homo sapiens 2.0 either, however. There was no self-awareness as of yet - so it would be unfair to say that it was INTENT upon assessing it's mom and dad in any sort of a legal context, but it would be similarly unfair to say that it wasn't exercising the intention of improving its chances to survive and reproduce, because those things are what evolution is all about. Let's just not anthromorphise too much about an eleven week-old embryo.

What had actually happened was that a small amount of tissue had amalgamated to the forebrain in response to the Antarean DNA. Antar was - as has previously been mentioned - a rough neighborhood. About a hundred thousand years ago Antar too had undergone a revolution of cultural mores. Antar too had gone through a period where there was a lack of long-term commitment between the male and female of the species. It had been a difficult time for the offspring. In Antar even a juvenile with a solid nuclear family - a mom and dad who were devoted to it and to each other - wasn't necessarily going to make it to a state where they were mature enough to pass on their own genes, but a juvenile handicapped by only having ONE parent had poor odds indeed. That's how the little lump of tissue had evolved into what was - in essence - a hardware program for analysis and - if necessary - correction of the commitment of its parents.

That isn't to say that Liz and Max's new daughter was actually conscious of any of this - she certainly wasn't. This was just a small portion of her not-yet-self-aware brain, roughly the complexity of an archaic earth TRS-80 4K computer. What the little lump of tissue did initially was mainly analyze auras. Oh sure, it's hardware programming had become a little more 'concerned' if one could use that word, than it would have otherwise become due to the rather prolonged period from conception to what the little lump of tissue would consider the paternal units getting 'frisky,' but there had been damn little the lump of tissue could do since the last time that had happened the little lump of tissue was yet to exist and could not have possibly identified who its male parent was. Now that father-dear had actually made his presence known, however, the tissue had activated.

What the small piece of tissue did initially was to assess the disjunction in the auras of its parental units. If their - perhaps it would be best to call it 'compatibility' was deemed inadequate, the little smidgen of tissue would become a very simple switch that would send a signal to another small smidgen of tissue that would - perhaps the best word would be 'harmonize' the auras of the maternal and paternal units.

While it may not seem 'fair' for a lump of neurons to distort the basic personalities of the two adults that created it, evolution simply didn't care. If you aren't cheating, you aren't trying, was evolution's motto. If it needed to mindwarp mom and dad to make for itself a family that would protect it until adulthood, the little bundle of cells didn't have a thing against that. And a few hours ago it probably would have done that very thing - back when Max was still in denial.

But as the assessment of the two auras was accomplished it became readily apparent that the maternal unit had already done some serious convincing of old dad that he ought to hang with mom and even produce some more siblings with jointly shared DNA. So the second smidgen of tissue didn't get used. Mom had cemented her relationship with dad without any help from the fetal forebrain cells.

Of course, it wasn't going to atrophy completely away either. Mindbending was a handy power to have too - especially if you came from a rough and tumble planet like Antar. But the first little lump of fetal nerve tissue had done its job - at least for now. HAD mom and dad not decided to actually make this relationship 'tell death do us part,' it most certainly would have sent the signal and done that cementing for them. It wasn't really trying to play Cupid - didn't even understand the concept - it was just ensuring its own long-term survival. Evolution dealt with reality - not the philosophy of human ethics.

So, in the dim light of the pod chamber, there they lay, the two lovers each projecting their own large auras and both overlapping the little one. The little aura wasn't really happy - that would just be anthropomorphising again - but it sure seemed like it. In the dream as in life, the two lovers were safe in each others arms. In the overlapping of their auras, the little aura was - content.

But back in the office of the Special Agent in Charge of the El Paso FBI office, things were starting to get interesting.

"OK you two," said 'Tiny' Donovan, tapping the stack of files in front of him "... I want to know just what the Hell you two think you were doing trying to copy these records..."

"Tiny' Donovan had presence - not merely intensity, but size as well. The former Marine Recon officer was 6 foot six and 260 pounds - and even approaching his sixties, there wasn't much fat in that. His father - Sean Donovan - had been an 18 year old Irish-American draftee kid in the early Fifties when he'd left Massachusetts to get training at Ft. Sill Oklahoma before deploying to Korea. He'd met the 16 year old (she'd lied about her age to get in) Cherokee girl at a USO dance. They'd danced one dance and exchanged addresses - then been pen pals for the rest of the Korean War before he'd returned to Oklahoma. Her father was the tribal Chief and it hadn't been easy convincing the old man that this paleface from the East Coast was the right guy for his daughter, but convince him Sean had. The rest was history - and 'Tiny' Donovan and his five siblings were part of that history. He was not the agent you ever wanted to cross. He turned his attention first to Jaime.

"OK, Sanchez...I'm waiting.... and I DON'T enjoy waiting...."
Last edited by greywolf on Wed Jun 09, 2010 4:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.