Say Yes (AU M/L MATURE) [COMPLETE] 4/24/05

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Say Yes (AU M/L MATURE) [COMPLETE] 4/24/05

Post by sweetbrowneyes » Sun Feb 20, 2005 6:38 pm

Title: Say Yes
Author: sweetbrowneyes a.k.a Tiffany
Disclaimer: I again still own nothing.
Rating: Mature
Summary: After catching her husband cheating, a heartbroken Liz moves into an apartment with her friends Maria and Michael. What happens when she meets rich, play-boy Max Evans and moves in with him?

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Thanks to Babylisou for the goregous banner. Thanks a bunch!! :D

<center>Chapter 1</center>


Liz Sharp, aspiring nurse and current NYU student struggled with her suitcases as she entered the apartment building. Her tears blurred her vision making it that much more difficult to open the doors and hold onto her bags at the same time. She placed one of the suitcases onto the ground and swiped her eyes with the back of her hand. Picking her bag back up she continued with her struggle, and just as she managed to open the door the strap to her purse broke, causing its contents to spill out onto the sidewalk.

“Need help?” A soft voice sounded behind her.

Liz whirled around and had to shield her eyes against the sun as she stared up at the gorgeous man standing before.

“Yes. Thank you,” she said as he kneeled down to help her gather her things. Liz picked up her purse as the stranger shouldered two of her heavier bags, leaving her with her purse and her small backpack.

Why she was letting a random stranger in New York take her things was beyond her, but right now she didn’t care.

“I’m Max by the way,” he said as he held out his hand for her to shake.

She placed her smaller hand in his as she noticed his bright amber eyes for the first time. “Liz,” she returned.

She’d never seen eyes like that before. They seemed to just draw her in; almost making her forget that the man that was supposed to be her husband just shattered their marriage.

Liz realized that she was still holding onto his hand and she quickly pulled away, ducking her head as her face burned with a bright blush.

She held the door open and together they walked into the lobby. Max pressed the button for the elevator and gave her a small smile. “You okay?” he asked.

“I-I’m fine,” she said though she couldn’t stop the tears from rolling down her cheeks. She couldn’t believe that after only four months, she was already having marriage problems. She’d caught her husband in bed with another woman in THEIR bed. She couldn’t believe that he could just throw it all away like that.

“What floor are you on?” he asked, breaking her from her thoughts. She saw that he was already in the elevator, holding the doors open for her.

“Um… five… I think,” she said as she stepped inside.

They rode in an awkward silence and Liz sighed with relief when she heard the chime and the doors opened.

“You have everything? I’m headed upstairs.”

Liz grabbed her bags while Max held the door open for her. “Yeah. Thank you… Max.”

“Anytime.” He smiled brilliantly. “I hope I’ll see you around Liz.” Liz couldn’t help but smile at the way her name just rolled off his tongue. He returned her smile and again, she fond herself losing her grasp on her current situation.

“Bye Max.” She offered him the best smile she could give, gazed at his eyes once more before turning and walking down the hallway.

She stopped in front of apartment 504 and barely knocked once before it swung open. “It’s about damn time you… oh hey Liz. What happened?” Michael said when she passed by him with her bags. “Did that bastard hit you?”

Liz shook her head. “Is Maria here?”

“I’m right here,” Maria said as she walked in from the hallway. “What’s wrong Lizzie?”

“He’s cheating on me,” she cried. “I caught him in bed with another woman.”

“What me to kick his ass?” Michael offered cheerfully. Michael was never really too fond of Erick. In fact, no one thought he was the right guy or her. She guessed that they all were right.

“Michael, stop it,” Maria hissed. “Come on Lizzie. Let’s go in the bedroom. Michael’s got company coming over,” she said as she led Liz down the hall. “Tell me what happened.”

Liz made herself comfortable on the king sized bed before she started. “I was out with Alex at that new café they just opened up and I called Erick at home to let him know that Alex and I were going to a movie. The first time I called, he didn’t answer the phone and I figured he hadn’t gotten back from the office so Alex and I went to the movies. I called him again after the movie to see if he wanted to meet Alex and I for dinner. God, he was doing it with her while he was on the phone with me.”

“Oh chica.” Maria pulled her upset friend into her arms.

“He was out of breath and I heard some muffled sounds in the background, but I really didn’t think much of it then. He was fucking that bitch while he was on the phone with me.”

“Who was she?”

“I don’t know.” She shrugged. “Alex and I decided not to go to dinner and when I got home, I caught the two of them in bed. I didn’t stop to find out who she was. I threw my ring at him, packed my bags and came here.”

“I’m sorry Lizzie,” Maria said as she embraced her friend. “I knew he wasn’t good enough for you.”

“I know you didn’t. Everyone told me that he was wrong for me and I didn’t listen. Why didn’t I listen?”

“Because you were in love and it blinded you. You were fooled by his charm and couldn’t see what was underneath.”

“I was stupid,” she mumbled.

“No, you have a good heart and you easily trust people. He used that to his advantage and played you,” Maria reasoned. “I mean come on Lizzie. You were with him ever since your freshman year here. Now you finally… see the light if you will.”

Liz smiled at Maria’s choice of words. “So what are you going to do? Separate? Divorce?”

Liz cringed at that word. She never thought she’d get a divorce. At least not within the first year of her marriage. How was she supposed to get over Erick? He was her first and only serious relationship and he was a big part of her life for four years.

“I don’t know. I just need time,” she said. “Can I say here until I figure something out?”

Maria smiled. “Of course. My couch is your couch.”

“Are you sure Michael won’t mind? I mean I know you probably want to spend some time alone together.”

“Liz, its fine. Michael and I will get plenty of alone time together. Trust me,” Maria said with a wink.

Liz rolled her eyes. Though Maria had been her friend ever since she started at NYU, living with her and Michael was going to be a challenge.

Liz suddenly wondered if that Max guy lived on his own. Was he single or did he have a significant other. He seemed nice. And gorgeous. How could he not have someone to love him?

Why she was even thinking of him when she just found out her husband is cheating on her was beyond her knowledge, but for some reason, those eyes wouldn’t get out of her mind. Maybe it was just because she’d never seen that particular color before.

“Lizzie. Earth to Lizzie.” Maria voice and her hand waving in front of her face brought Liz back to reality. “Where’d you go? You just zoned out there for a minute.”

Liz blushed. “Sorry.”

Maria laughed as she stood from the bed and stretched her arms above her head. “Anyway, I think Max is here. You feel like meeting someone new or…”

Liz perked up at that name. “Max?”

“Yeah. He’s Michael’s new friend. He lives upstairs with his brother and he comes over for dinner all the time. He’s a really cool guy. You know… you and him should…”

“Maria,” she said warningly.

“Okay. Okay, I won’t do any set ups.” Liz knew that Maria wouldn’t stick to her word. Liz would just have to be ready for any date she tried to throw at her. Maria always itched to set Liz up on dates even when she and Erick were going out. Liz imagined that it’d be ten times worse now that she and Erick were having their problems.

“So do you just want to stay in here?”

“Oh… um you know what? I just need to use the bathroom and then I’ll be right out.”

“Okay.” Liz followed Maria out of the room and headed into the bathroom. Liz freshened up so she looked half way presentable. She left her purse in the living room, so she used some of Maria’s makeup. She couldn’t believe she was doing all of this because of some stranger off the street, but she couldn’t help herself. Was it weird to feel this way when you barely knew someone?

Liz checked herself in the mirror once more before she emerged into the hallway.

“Liz?” Max stood when she entered the room.

“Hi Max,” she said shyly.

“You two know each other?” Michael questioned.

Max smiled. “We’re old friends,” he answered without taking his eyes off Liz.

“Relax tiger,” Michael mumbled to Max, but Liz heard him any way and she wondered what he meant but that.

Maria excused herself to go check on dinner and Liz took a seat next to Max. “Looks like I got my wish,” he whispered to her.

“W-What’s that?” she stuttered as she fought against the shiver running up and down her spine. What the hell was wrong with her?

“To see you again.”

“Oh...” She blushed and bit her lip, not knowing how to answer.

“Maxwell, leave her alone. Liz doesn’t buy into that lame bullshit you think are good pick up lines,” Michael snickered from the other side of the room.

“So Liz,” Max started, ignoring Michael’s comments. “Are you going to be around for awhile?”

“Uh… yeah.”

He smiled brightly and gazed at her with those gorgeous eyes of his and said, “Good.”

TBC?......

Hope you like. Let me know. :D
Last edited by sweetbrowneyes on Sun Apr 24, 2005 2:48 pm, edited 17 times in total.
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Fri Feb 25, 2005 7:01 pm

Wow!! Thanks so much for the rsponse guys. I really don't know what to say but thanks. I forgot o mention in the first post that this is in Liz's POV. So, here's the next part and I hope you enjoy.

<center>Chapter 2</center>

Liz took a calming breath before she stepped out of the elevator and started down the familiar hallway. It had been about two weeks since she caught her husband in bed with another woman and now she was back to get the rest of her things.

“Are you sure about this Lizzie?” Alex asked her for the fifth time. “Not that I want you to get back with this guy and I’d really like it if I could punch his nose in, but are you sure this is what you want?”

Liz nodded, although every time he asked that very question, she could feeling her certainty waning.

She couldn’t help but think that she wasn’t making the right choice. Maybe she was giving up on her marriage too quickly. After all, she HAD been with him for over three years and had been married for only four months. She owed it to herself to see if this marriage could work.

“What’s with that look?” Alex said. “Are you having second thoughts?” Liz could tell that he was trying to hide his disappointment over her indecision.

“I think I am.” Liz stopped and turned to her older brother. “Do you think I’m totally stupid for having second thoughts?”

“No,” he sighed. “For some otherworldly reason, you love him and if you think that you can forgive him than… I guess you can’t help who you love.”

Liz glanced down the hall to the door that would lead her to her husband. “I better go talk to him.”

He nodded and embraced his kid sister. “Call me later?”

She agreed and waited until he disappeared in the elevator before continuing down the hall.

“Liz!” Erick almost shouted in surprise when he answered the door. His green eyes were wide with surprise before he pulled her into an awkward hug. “You came back.”

“Yeah… um, can we talk?”

“Yeah… of course.” He stepped aside and let her pass him. She stood uncomfortably in the middle of the room. It was strange how it didn’t feel like her home anymore. She felt as if she was trespassing on someone else’s property.

“Baby, I can’t tell you how sorry I am,” he started. “Are you coming back to me?”

“We need to talk first.” He nodded and gestured for her to take a seat. She started towards the recliner, it was always her favorite chair.

Something shining caught her eye as she walked passed the coffee table and she spotted a gold ear ring. Figuring it was hers, Liz bent down to pick it up.

“Uh… Liz why don’t we go sit in the kitchen?” Erick moved to help her up, but she rejected his assistance when she spotted some red lace sticking out from underneath the couch.

“What the hell is this?!” she hissed as she pulled a lacy bra from beneath the cushions.

“What are you talking about baby? That’s yours,” he said, perfectly feigning innocence.

She tossed the lacy material in his face and balled her fists in fury. “You’re one hell of an actor. You know damn well I’m not a double D,” she spat as she launched herself at him, her tiny fists hitting him as hard as she could. She couldn’t believe that she was thinking of giving him another chance, that she thought he was worth her time and that she could spend the rest of her life with him. She must have been insane.

”You fucking bastard! Three years! Three fucking years I wasted on your sorry ass!” she screamed as she beat on anything she could get her hands on.

“Liz… baby it’s not what you think,” he begged as he tried to grab onto her swinging fists. He pulled her close, his determined gaze staring sharply down at her. “Liz, listen to me. Be reasonable here…”

“Are you shitting me?!!” Her hand was whipping across his cheek in a split second, leaving only the loud cracking sound to break the silence. “You want me to be reasonable?! I come here to try and work things out and I find out that you’re still having trouble keeping your dick in your pants! You want me to be reasonable!?” She bent over to pick up the ear ring from the floor when she noticed a glass sitting on table, with fresh, bright pink lipstick imprinted on the side. Liz burned with fury. “Is the slut still here!?”

He reached out for her, but she sidestepped him. “Lizzie…”

“Don’t touch me,” she growled. “I spent three years giving you everything I had, I loved you. Everyone told me you were no good for me, but I refused to believe it. Now I see the asshole you really are.”

“Liz wait! Can we talk about this?” he called as she stalked to the door. She’d have to get Alex to come back later to get the rest of her things. Right now she couldn’t stand the sight of him.

She whirled around in fury. “No. I’m through talking. I hope you’re happy with the slut you’re fucking. You will be receiving divorce papers soon.” With that, she flung open the door and stormed down the hallway, his desperate plea behind her only fueling her anger. She hurried out of the building and onto the streets of New York.

She could feel the tears threatening to take over, but she refused to let them. She was not going to cry over him. If he could just throw away three years, than she could too.

Hopping in a cab, she rode back to Maria and Michael’s apartment and the further she got from Erick, the harder it was to keep her tears at bay. She still couldn’t understand how she never saw the jerk that lived under what she thought was a perfect boyfriend. She had only thought that he was the one for her and that he was as good as it got. Now she wasn’t sure if she’d ever be able to find the one for her.

After paying the driver, Liz climbed out of the cab and headed inside of the apartment building. Just as she pushed the button to summon the elevator, the doors opened, and Max stepped out.

“Hey Liz,” he greeted cheerfully.

“Hey,” she returned.

He narrowed his eyes and she knew he saw the tears in her eyes. “You okay?”

Liz ducked her head and quickly wiped her eyes with the back of her hand. “No… I just found out that my hus…” She trailed off, realizing that Max was practically a stranger to her and she was about to spill the details of her personal life to him. How did he get her to do that?

“Never mind. It’s nothing,” she mumbled.

He nodded and gave her a sympathetic smile. “Anything I can do to help?”

“Not really. But thanks though.” He smiled and she couldn’t help but mirror him.

“Hey, do you wanna come and get some coffee with me? Take your mind off your problems?”

Liz wanted to, but she didn’t know if she should. After all, she’d just found out that her husband was still sleeping around on her.

“Can I take a rain check?” she queried as she stepped into the elevator.

“Sure. See you around.” He swiveled around and headed towards the exit of the building.

Liz watched him go and before she knew it, she was rushing out of the elevator before the doors could close.

“Max, wait!” she called as she jogged towards him. He pivoted around to face her, his eyes bright when she came to a stop in front of him.

“I could really use someone to talk to if you don’t mind,” she said as she wiped her eyes. “I need to vent.” He simply nodded and led her out of the building.

Liz breathed deeply as she let Max place his hand at the small of her back as they exited onto the street. She needed to vent to someone and she figured it’d be easier to do it with someone that didn’t know her and didn’t know Erick so that she could get an unbiased opinion.

The two walked in silence to a quaint little cafe a few blocks from the apartment. They sat in the back, ensuring their privacy.

“So, vent away,” Max prompted with a soft smile.

At Max’s encouragement, Liz began, starting at the beginning of Liz and Erick’s relationship. “We actually met at the library in our freshman year. I had this massive paper due. It was my first big college paper and I was agonizing over it. We bumped into each other, bonded over our college experience and then he asked me out just to get my mind off of school for awhile. My friends and family told me that he wasn’t the one for me, but I never gave it a second thought.”

Liz rambled on about how she fell in love and their dreams of getting married and starting a family, despite her family’s warnings. She told him that she was suspicious of him cheating back in her sophomore year, but he so solemnly swore that he was always and forever faithful to her. She replayed the events when she found him in bed with another woman two weeks ago and when she found the bra stuffed under the couch earlier today.

“Am I wrong for wanting a divorce? I mean, we’ve been inseparable for three years and maybe we should try again.” She looked desperately to Max, hoping that he had an answer. He had sat quietly through her whole tirade, occasionally reaching for her hand to comfort her when she choked up a few times.

Max took a sip of his coffee, seemingly pondering all that she’d told him. “Well, that depends on if you can forgive him or not,” he said. “And if you trust him enough to be faithful again. Without that trust, you have no relationship.”

Liz sighed as she fell back against her chair. Her marriage was over. Never did she think she was going to be in this position.

“Thanks for listening Max.,” she said, feeling a little sheepish about exposing her private live to him.

“It’s no problem. That’s what I’m here for,” he said, giving her a reassuring smile. Liz returned his smile, but didn’t dare look at his eyes. She remembered how they pulled her in when they first met and this wasn’t the most appropriate time to be gazing into his eyes.

Over the two weeks that Liz had been staying with Maria and Michael, Max came over frequently especially around dinner time. They hadn’t really gotten a chance to talk one on one, but from what she could tell, he was a really sweet guy.

She admitted to herself that she was attracted to him when they’d first met. He was a handsome guy and she’d have to be blind not to find him attractive. But she quickly came to her senses when she remembered that her marriage was on the line and it was not the time to be falling all over a guy she didn’t even know.

“I don’t get it,” she expressed. “What’s the point of saying you love someone and then turn right around and sleep with someone else? I don’t understand,” she cried as she placed her elbows on the table and covered her face with her hands.

“Me either,” Max mumbled into his mug.

“What?” She leaned towards him to try and hear what he’d mumbled better.

“Nothing,” he said. “Nothing important.”

Max and Liz ordered something light to eat and Liz found herself laughing as Max joked around with her, telling her stories of when he, his brother and sister were younger and they used to poke fun at each other. He took her mind off her problems just for awhile and for that, she was grateful.

“Thanks again for listening Max,” Liz said as they stood in front of Maria and Michael’s door. Max had insisted on walking her to her door, saying that he wanted to be a perfect gentleman to make up for her crappy day.

“It’s what I do. We should do this again some time,” he suggested, his eyes twinkling and hypnotizing her.

She smiled brightly and slowly nodded her head. “Yeah,” she breathed. “I’d like that.”

“See you later Liz.” He bent down and planted a soft kiss on her cheek before he turned and walked in the direction of the elevator.

“Bye Max,” she called after him. He swiveled around, winked one beautiful eye and continued on his way.

Liz waited until she could no longer see him before she stepped inside of the apartment.

The living room was dark and Liz felt around for the light switch. “Liz.”

Liz jumped at the sound of Maria’s voice and she slapped her hand over her eyes just in case that Michael happened to be with her in a provocative position.

“Relax chica, it’s just me,” Maria laughed.

Liz tossed her keys and purse on the table beside the door before joining Maria on the couch. “Why were you sitting in the dark?”

“Well, I’m over here and the light switch is way over there…”

“Got’cha.”

“So, where have you been?” she questioned as she dipped her hand in the overly greased potato chips.

“Well, first I went to get my stuff from Erick… I don’t want to talk about that now… and then I ran into Max and we went out for coffee.”

“Max? You went out with Max?” Maria queried with an inquisitive look.

“Yeah. I needed to vent and well, he was there and offered to take me out for coffee.”

“Liz, maybe it’s not a good idea for you to be hooking up with Max,” Maria reasoned. “I mean, you’re having problems with your husband right now and…”

“Who said anything about getting together with him? We just went out for coffee,” she explained, a little annoyed. “Besides, weren’t you the one telling me that we’d make a perfect match?”

“Yeah, but that was before I found out that Max was a man whore,” she said through a mouth full of chips.

“What?”

Maria swallowed and then took a big gulp of her pop before continuing. “Michael and I were talking about you two earlier… and I admit I was concocting a plan to get you two together… and then he told me that Max told him that he has never been in a committed relationship before and he’s always picking up random girls and hooking up with them. He’s a total sweetheart from what I can tell, but when he goes out and gets drunk, Michael says that he’s always on the prowl for new ass. Chica, I’m sorry, but Max is not the guy you want to be involved with.” Maria stood and headed into the kitchen.

Liz felt her heart sink, but she quickly pushed away the feeling. “Max and I were never and will never hook up,” Liz stated. “Whatever he does is his business and doesn’t have anything to do with me.”

“You tell’em girl!” Maria yelled from inside the fridge.

It didn’t matter to her what Max did with himself.

But if it didn’t matter, why was she feeling so crappy?

TBC………
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Wed Mar 02, 2005 9:56 pm

<center>Chapter 3</center>

Liz dug into her second tub of Ben and Jerry’s as she pressed rewind on the remote control. Maria and Michael were at work and Liz had the apartment to herself to wallow in her self pity.

The tape in the VCR stopped and she pressed play, watching, for the third time, her wedding. She tried to figure out exactly where they went wrong by watching the tape as many times as she could and maybe she could see signs of her marriage diminishing even before it started.

She was so fooled. She was convinced that Erick was as happy as she was and now she was confused as to where it all went wrong. She was now in the process of hiring a lawyer so that she could get this divorce over as quick as possible. The quicker the less painful.

A knock at the door disturbed her from her thoughts and she quickly shut off the tape before yelling that the door was open.

“Lizzie, get up and get dressed,” Alex commanded as he stormed into the room.

“Alex, what the hell is wrong with you?” Liz screeched as he snatched the ice cream out of her hands and pulled her to her feet.

“You, my dear sister, are coming out with me. Maria called and told me how you’ve been holed up in this apartment for two weeks, only leaving to go to work.”

“Alex, I don’t feel like going out,” she whined. “Plus you know that I’m not the party type of person.”

“Well too bad. I’m not having my baby sister in here moping over some asshole that I should’ve shot with my shotgun years ago…”

“Alex you don’t own a shotgun.”

“Well… I could improvise. Now, there’s no reason for you to be sitting here getting fat off of ice cream just because of that… that person,” he said as he moved into the kitchen and placed the ice cream in the freezer. “Now, please go take a shower cause you really need it, get dressed and let’s go party, meet you some guys and forget all about dick boy!” he said as he pushed her towards the hallway.

Liz smiled as he shooed her out of the room. “Thank you Alex,” she said as she threw her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek. As soon as she walked away, he swiped at his cheek, a disgusted look forming on his face.

“Liz, what’d I tell you about spreading your cooties around. Geez!” he said in mock annoyance.

Liz rolled her eyes before closing herself up in the bathroom.

An hour later, Liz and Alex hopped out of the cab and into the night club. Liz squinted when she entered the smoky atmosphere and the loud pounding music hit her ears. This usually wasn't her scene, but she felt relieved at doing something different for a change. She definitely wasn’t moping tonight.

“You want a drink Alex,” she asked as the two siblings inched there way deeper into the club.

“No thanks. I’m headed over to the ladies room,” he answered as his head bopped to the hyper music.

Liz frowned. “Um… you do know you’re a guy don’t you?”

“Yeah, but you ladies like to hang out in the bathroom in packs and if I’m lucky I can get a hand full,” he said with a wiggle of his eyebrows.

“You’re disgusting you know that?” Alex simply smiled before the two headed off in different directions.

Liz pushed her way through the crowd of people and found an empty seat at the bar.

“Liz!” Startled, Liz looked up and found Max’s golden eyes staring back her. He was standing on the opposite side of the bar, steadily bouncing to the music as he mixed drinks.

“Hey Max,” she greeted, a bright smile lighting her features. She gave him her drink order and watched him mix it before he slid it to her. “I didn’t know you worked here,” she yelled over the music.

Max served a drink to the girl next to her with a wink and a charming smile before turning his attention to back Liz. “Yeah, gotta feed the monkey,” he replied. He leaned over the counter so that she could hear him better, his spicy scent floating up to her nose and arousing her senses. “So, what brings you out tonight?”

“I was bored just sitting around the apartment, so I decided to come out,” she answered. She wasn’t going to tell him that she’d been moping around the apartment and her brother had to almost drag her out tonight.

Liz and Max hadn’t been out since that day she went to see Erick and Max took her out for coffee. He still came over to the apartment for dinner, but Liz was in too much a slump to go out.

“You look great,” he said.

Liz looked down at her simple black dress and blushed, hoping that it was dark enough so that he couldn’t see it. “Thanks. So do you,” she returned. He stared at her for awhile and Liz couldn’t help but wonder what he was thinking about.

She remembered what Maria had said about him being a man whore and it was obvious that he got some action with the way he flirted constantly with the women around him. She was tempted to ask him how he could be with someone without getting attached, but then she reminded herself that it was none of her business.

“Hey Liz, have you eaten dinner yet?” he suddenly asked her.

“Not if you don’t count a tub of Ben and Jerry’s. Why?”

Max smiled. “I get off in a little while, you wanna go grab a bite to eat somewhere?” he asked her. “Or we could just stay here and hang out.”

Liz shook her head. “I’d rather go out to dinner.”

“Great,” he replied. “Let me finish up here and then we’ll head out.”

Max’s shift was over ten minutes later and soon he and Liz were searching the crowd for Alex.

“Alex! What happened?” she queried when she and Max found him coming out of the women’s bathroom, his pants shocking wet. “Did you get scared when a pretty girl actually came and talked to you again? I know it only happens once in a million years, but…”

“Can it Lizzie,” he growled. “For your information, I met this beautiful lady and she happens to be very interested in me.”

Liz raised a questioning eyebrow. “And what happened there?” she said as she gestured to his pants.

“She dragged me into the stall for a little fun and well, I kinda fell in.”

“Where is she now,” she giggled.

“In the bathroom cleaning up. She’ll be out in a minute.” He wiggled his eyebrows and Liz could only laugh at her brother.

Alex shook his head. “Liz, aren’t you going to introduce us?” Alex said, gesturing to Max.

“Oh! Sorry. Alex this is my friend Max, Max this is my brother Alex.”

Alex stretched out his hand and shook Max’s. “Nice to meet you Max.” Alex said as he watched the other man with a curious eye.

“Same here,” Max replied.

“Max and I are going out to dinner and maybe a movie…” she looked to Max for confirmation and he nodded his head in agreement. “Don’t miss me too much while I’m gone Alex,” she warned her brother.

“But Lizzie, you’re so damn missable?” he replied pout. Liz only rolled her eyes before letting Max lead her out of the club.

They walked a couple of blocks to a nearby Chili’s restaurant, singing the jingle to the commercial as they went.

“I want my baby back, baby back, baby back, baby back…”

“Chili’s baby back ribs. Chili’s baby back ribs.”

“Barbeque sauce.” The two burst into laughter as they entered the restaurant

“So, Liz, we’ve been residents in the same apartment for almost a month now and I still know so little about you,” Max said once they were seated and had ordered.

“Well maybe we could do something to change that,” she countered with a soft smile.

Max smiled in return and she ignored the small flutter in her chest. “So, are you originally from New York?”

She shook her head. “Roswell. Complete opposite.” She laughed when Max’s eyes widened in shock. “And before you ask, yes, everything is alien-themed and there are a few UFO nuts that run around looking for aliens all the time.”

“Were you ever into that? Looking for aliens I mean.”

“No. I’m one of those people who needed to see it in order to believe it.” Max looked slightly amused and Liz rolled her eyes. “Okay, so at one point I did get into the whole alien thing, but that phase of my life is in the past, so let’s just leave it there,” she said, her cheeks reddening in embarrassment.

“I could just picture you exploring the desert for spaceship wreckage and searching the globe for an otherworldly phenomenon,” he laughed.

“Shut up Max.”

“Why?”

“Cause that actually happened,” she laughed.

“Seriously?”

“Yeah. Well, we never searched the globe as you so dramatically put it, but we did go into the desert looking for ship wreckage and then there was this freak lightening strike… its really ridiculous and embarrassing now that I think about it.”

“Yeah. It kind of sounds like it is.” Liz balled up her napkin and threw it at him even though she couldn’t help but laugh along.

She continued to tell him about the Crashdown, the alien-themed restaurant her parents owned and the ugly turquoise uniforms she had to wear when she worked there. He had a good ten minute laugh on that one alone and she ran out of napkins to throw at him.

Their food arrived a while later and they continued to engage in easy conversation as they ate. Max told her what it was like to grow up in Orlando, Florida with an older brother and sister. And Liz was surprised to find out that his family was very wealthy. His parents were the owners of Venas Games. They were one, if not the top video game producing companies in the world. She never would have guessed that he had that much wealth.

“My parents started it when they were fifteen. Can you believe that,” he said. Liz could tell from the way he talked about them that Max adored his parents. Not because of the money, but because he really looked up to them.

“That’s amazing,” she exclaimed, awed by the fact that someone of Max’s status was sitting right in front of her.

“So what does Venas stand for? I always wonder that,” Liz queried.

“It’s just Evans scrambled up.”

She silently wondered why he worked as a bartender when his family obviously had more than enough to support him and she asked him just that.

“Well my parents pay for my tuition, but that’s it. They never let us get swelled heads because we have money, we know the value of a dollar and what it feels like to actually earn your own way and live on our own. I prefer it if they didn’t just hand me money. What’s the fun in that?”

“Um, hello…. Living in a huge pent house and the most luxurious life possible. I consider that fun,” she retorted.

Max smiled. “Yeah, but I don’t want to live off my parents’ money. I want to make it on my own. You know?”

“Yeah. I know how you feel.” Liz remembered when she first came to New York. She wanted to do everything herself and actually feel like she was an adult, out on her own. She agreed that there is nothing like that feeling that you’ve made it on your own.

“Just don't let Alex know that you have video game connections unless you want a stalker,” Liz laughed.

“So what do you do Liz?” he asked.

“Well I work part time at the hospital. I’m want to become a nurse. What about you?”

“I’m majoring in business, but I’m not sure what I want to do yet. I’m kind of leaning towards real estate though.”

“Nice.” She smiled.

“Yeah,” he laughed.

The rest of dinner flew by rather quickly for Liz. She found herself laughing more than she had in a long time and it was refreshing.

“Liz, you wanna come back to my place and watch a movie?” he asked as they polished off the last of their dessert.

Liz was eager to agree, not wanting the night to end, but she quickly caught herself before she could answer. All the thoughts of Max being a “man whore” as Maria had put it, which had completely disappeared from her mind until now, came rushing back and she wondered if he appeared this nice to all the girls he took to bed. No matter how much fun she’d had tonight, she still had a little suspiciousness about Max’s intensions with her. Was he just being nice to her to get in her pants? Or was he really genuine?

“What do you say Liz?” he asked again when she didn’t answer him.

Liz bit her lip in indecision. “I don’t know Max. It’s kind of late and…”

“I thought we were having a good time,” he protested.

“Yeah but….” Liz took a deep breath, figuring that she might as well be honest with him. “I’m not exactly sure of your intensions with me Max. Maria told me about all the women you bring home and... and I don’t know what you thought but…”

“You think I’m just trying to get laid?” he asked. She could’ve sworn she heard a hint of hurt in his tone, but she chose to ignore it.

“No! I mean, yeah…. I mean, I’m not really sure.”

“Liz I asked you out because I like hanging out with you. I wanted to get to know you better and be your friend. Just because I get around doesn’t mean that I’m out to sleep with every girl I see.”

“I know. I’m sorry.” She shifted in her seat, still a little uneasy about the subject of their conversation.

“Liz, despite what Maria or whoever has told you, yeah I sleep with a lot of girls, but it’s not like I take advantage of them. They know right off the bat that whatever we have will be only for one night and it’s all in fun,” he explained.

Liz nodded, her uneasiness dimming a bit as Max called for the check. After Max forbid her to pay half of the bill, the two left the restaurant and caught a cab back to the apartment building.

“So how about that movie Liz?” Max asked as they stepped into the elevator.

Liz shrugged. “Okay. But let me go and change first.” Liz changed into some blue jeans and a tee shirt before she headed upstairs to Max’s apartment. She knocked softly before the door was flung open.

“Oh. I’m sorry, this must be the wrong place,” Liz said when she saw that Max wasn’t the one that opened the door, but a shorter man with sandy brown hair.

“You looking for Max?” the guy asked. Liz nodded. “I’m Kyle. Max’s brother.” Liz reached out to take his hand before he stepped aside to let her in. “Max went to change. He’ll be out in a minute.”

“Thanks.” Liz smiled; a little unnerved by the way Kyle was eyeing her.

“Are you here to um… you know…”

It took Liz awhile before she understood what he meant and when she did, she quickly denied. “Oh, no! We’re just friends.”

He smiled warmly then before offering her something to drink. He returned with a bottle of water for her, just as Max entered the room.

“Hey Liz,” Max said, clad in faded blue jeans and a white tee shirt.

“Hey,” she greeted as he sat beside her on the couch.

“Have fun you two,” Kyle called out as he disappeared into his room.

“So, is “There’s Something About Mary” good?” Liz nodded and Max started the DVD. Max propped his feet on the coffee table while Liz leaned against the arm of the couch, draping her legs across Max’s lap. By the end of the movie, the two were sleeping peacefully huddled under the same blanket that Kyle had draped over them.

Liz awoke the next morning, first confused about her surroundings until she spotted Max, sleeping soundly beside her. She smiled and found a pad of paper and a pen on the table beside the couch. She scribbled him a note, asking him if he wanted to meet her for lunch later, before she headed down stairs.

“Where were you all night?” Maria asked from the kitchen when Liz entered the apartment.

“Max and I went out to dinner and then we went back to his place to watch a movie,” she explained nonchalantly.

“Watch a movie? Max Evans? Just watching a movie with a woman?” Maria queried with raised eyebrows.

“Yeah, “There’s Something About Mary.” And then we fell asleep.” Maria watched her with a funny look before she returned her attention to the burnt eggs before her.

Liz collapsed on the couch, her makeshift bed and within minutes, she was dozing off.

TBC………..

I'll be back Sunday with a new part. Hope you enjoyed. :D
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Be at Peace MJ

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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Sun Mar 06, 2005 10:07 am

Thanks for the fb guys. Now on with the new part.....

<center>Chapter 4</center>

Liz walked through the front door, just having come home from work at the hospital. The phone rang just as she kicked off her shoes. “I got it!!” Liz called through the apartment as she jogged towards the phone. “Hello?”

“Hey Lizzie?”

“Daddy!”

“How’s my favorite baby girl doing?”

Liz couldn’t help the wide smile that formed on her face then as she settled on her makeshift bed on the couch. No matter how old she got, she’d always loved it when her father called her “baby girl.” “I’m fine Dad. How are you and Mom? How’s the café?”

“Everything’s fine here. I just wanted to make sure you were dealing with everything okay. You don’t need me to come out there, do you?”

Liz rolled her eyes. She knew her family just wanted to watch out for her, but they acted as if they said the wrong thing around her, she’d dissolve into a ball of tears. No matter how many times she told them she was doing alright, they still tiptoed around her and it really irritated her.

“Dad, I’m fine. Even though I appreciate it, I really wish you and Alex would stop pestering me and threatening Erick’s life. And tell Mom to stop sending me those supposed inspirational emails. They don’t help.”

“What? They’re just tips on how to get rid of stress. With your divorce and school starting up in a few more months, I just want you to be okay.”

“I am Dad. Maria and Michael are being great and letting me stay with them until I figure out something out.”

He let out a long sigh on the other end, causing Liz to smile. “Okay. But promise me you’ll call if you need anything.”

“I promise.”

“Good. Now I have to go before this new cook we hired burns down my restaurant. Mom said she’ll call you later.”

“Okay. Bye Dad.”

“Love you.”

“Love you too.” Liz hung up and began flipping through the channels for something interesting to watch.

“Who was it Liz?” Maria asked when she emerged from the bedroom dressed in an elegant red gown. Her hair was done up in an intrigue pattern with a few of her curly locks falling around her face.

“My Dad. Why are you so dressed up?”

“Three year anniversary,” she answered with a bright smile. Michael trudged into the living room moments later, looking very uncomfortable, yet handsome in his suit.

“Let’s go so we can get back before the game comes on,” he griped.

“Oh we’re staying out all night hair boy. I deserve something for putting up with you for three years. Besides, that’s what VCRs are for.”

Michael rolled his eyes in response, and Liz giggled. Maria had him so whipped and as much as he acted like he didn’t care, Liz knew he did. It was obvious how much he loved Maria and she found herself jealous of their relationship regardless of the many arguments they had. True love is what they had and what Liz wanted.

“What are you up to tonight Liz?”

Liz shrugged, staring drearily at the T.V. “Probably watch a movie.” She caught the look exchanged between Maria and Michael and she knew what was coming next.

“Why don’t you come with us?” Michael offered.

Liz smiled, caught between being thankful that she had friends that cared about her and feeling like crap that her friends pitied her.

“No thanks. You guys go and have fun. It’s your night to be alone.” Maria shot her a sympathetic smile.

“You sure?” Maria queried.

“Yes. Go and have fun.” She watched them with a reassuring smile as they headed out the door.

Now alone and bored, Liz picked up the phone and called Alex, hoping that he was home.

“Hello?” he answered.

“Hey Alex, What are you up to tonight?”

“I have a date,” he said. She could just hear the excitement in his voice as if he were a kid on Christmas.

“Is this the same girl you were in the bathroom with at the club last week?”

“Yep. See, your big bro has some moves of his own.”

“Whatever,” she muttered.

“I gotta go. I’ll talk to you later.”

“Bye Alex.” Liz hung up, disappointed that she seemed to be the only one without anything to do.

She abruptly wondered what Max was doing. The thought of seeing Max made her giddy all of a sudden and she bounced to her suitcase in the corner of the room which was also her closet and changed clothes before she left the apartment. They had hung out a couple of times and had become good friends.

She pressed the button to summon the elevator and it didn’t take long for the doors to slide open. But when they did, she jumped back in horror when she witnessed Max and some woman huddled up in the corner of the elevator, wrapped up in a heated embrace. They jumped apart, but not fast enough for Liz not to get an eyeful of the couple.

“Liz!... Um… hi,” Max stuttered breathlessly.

“Hi…. Um, I was just coming up to see you,” her eyes flickered to the blonde woman who was now reapplying lip stick on the other side of the elevator. “I mean, to see if you wanted to go out to dinner or something.” She dropped her eyes to the floor, embarrassed at how awkward and lame she sounded. “I’ll uh… I’ll just go now.” Swiveling around, Liz hurried back to the apartment before she could burst into tears. Funny thing was, she didn’t even know why she was crying.
************

Liz opened the package of meat and placed it in the skillet, thankful that the sizzle drowned out the soft moans coming from in the bedroom. Liz had gotten used to Michael and Maria disappearing into their room at random times of the day, but today, they were extremely horny for some reason and if she had to sit here and listen to Maria screaming in pleasure one more time, she was going to go crazy.

Liz left the meat to cook and answered the knock on the door.

“Hey Liz,” Max greeted her. Liz stepped aside to let him in before she closed the door.

Liz had been avoiding Max after the incident in the elevator a few days ago. She had no idea what to say to him and she was too embarrassed to look him in the eye. She knew she would have to see him sooner or later, but she just hoped it was later.

“What brings you by?”

“I just wanted to see if you wanted to come out with me. But it looks like you’ve got dinner already started,” he said as he followed her into the kitchen.

“You can stay if you like. I’m making nachos,” she said as she checked the meat before she leaned against the counter.

Max opened his mouth to respond but was interrupted by a loud moan coming from the bedroom. “Please tell me they’re not doing what I think they’re doing,” Max said with a grimace.

“They’ve been at it all day,” Liz sighed.

Max moved beside her and leaned against the counter. “And you’ve been here listening to them? Why didn’t you come up to my place? We could’ve hung out.”

“I didn’t want to bother you,” she said as she bit her lip.

He reached out and brushed his hand against her arm. “You don’t bothered me. We could go see a movie after dinner if you want.”

“Yeah. I’d like that.” She smiled, glad that the uneasiness she felt when he first came in started to melt away. Liz turned to tend to the meat cooking in the skillet, and she added the sauce before she turned back to Max. She found him looking at her and he smiled before dropping his eyes.

“What do you want to see? I know you’re into comedies with the way you snorted when you laughed when we watched “There’s Something About Mary,” he laughed.

“Max I told you not to mention that again,” she laughed as she lightly pushed his arm.

“Don’t worry, it’ll be our little secret,” he said with a wink of his eye.

“I’d better stay that way. Just remember you told me some stories and I have dirt on you Evans.”

“Point taken,” he laughed. Liz laughed along with him, but then made the mistake of maintaining eye contact with him for too long. His eyes had a way of drawing her in and keeping her there until she was weak in the knees.

Apparently they had been staring longer than she thought because the next thing she knew, she was smelling smoke ad scrapping the burned food into the garbage.

“Well,” Max said as he waved away the smoke and ushered Liz out of the kitchen. “I guess this means we’re going out for dinner too, since the kitchen is now ablaze?”

Liz narrowed her eyes as she shoved on her shoes. “Are you making fun of me?”

“I’m not saying anything,” he chuckled. “Although I think you’d better open a window before you smoke out the whole apartment building.”

Liz stuck her tongue out at him and the two left the apartment. They took a cab to a restaurant a little ways from the apartment.

Liz was enjoying herself and her company. But her fun came to a screeching halt when she saw Erick and his date walking into the restaurant.

“You okay?” Max asked her with she stiffened. Liz tore her eyes from the door and glanced at Max. He turned to see what she was looking at.

“That guy that’s with that blonde girl… that’s Erick.”

“You wanna leave?”

She nodded frantically. “Please.” Liz wasn’t sure if the girl he was with was the same girl he was cheating with, but she couldn’t care less. She did not want to see him right now and she’d rather just leave.

Before Max could call for a check, Erick and his date walked passed their table.

“Liz! Oh my God! What a surprise!” he exclaimed as if they weren’t in a middle of a divorce and he hadn’t cheated on her.

Liz poured herself a glass of champagne and gulped it down. He made her feel so uncomfortable and she knew this was not going to be pleasant.

“You know Angel don’t you?”

“Hey, could you move along. We’re trying to have dinner here,” Max said, looking a little more that annoyed.

“Look, lover boy, I was talking to my wife!” Erick spat.

Max jumped to his feet and towered over the shorter man “Your ex-wife is with me now, so back off!” Max returned. Everyone in the restaurant was looking at them now and Liz filled her glass once more and again chugged it down as the situation quickly escalated.

“We’re not divorced yet. She’s still my wife. What she couldn’t wait to get rid of me to start whoring up the city.”

Liz saw Max’s fists tightening at his sides and she jumped in front of him before he could swing his heavy hand at Erick.

“Max, wait!” Max lowered his fist and looked down at her, his eyes burning in fury. “Just leave it alone, okay? Just let it go.”

“But Liz…”

“If I were you I’d take the little skank’s advice. It’d save you a lot of money in hospital bills,” Erick snickered behind her.

Liz spun around, her fist connecting with his jaw before any of them had a chance to blink. Her head spinning and her vision blurring, Liz stumbled back into Max and he caught her in his arms while Erick stumbled backwards, crashing into Angel and the two went tumbling to the floor.

Just then, the manager of the restaurant appeared at the scene. “What’s going on here? Is everything okay here Mr. Evans?”

“No Frank, it’s not. This man is disturbing me and my date and I’d appreciate it if he were escorted out,” Max answered in a very controlled tone as he pulled Liz away from Erick.

“Of course.” Liz watched as Frank grabbed Erick and his date and pulled them to their feet. He walked them to the door and Max pulled Liz back into their booth.

“Is your hand okay?” he asked as he took her small fist in his hands and examined it carefully.

“It’s a little sore.”

“Remind me not to piss you off,” Max chuckled. “And here you are trying to calm me down and you go and wail on him!! High-larious!!” he laughed. Liz didn’t return his laughter and soon he was wrapping his arms around her. “Hey, you okay.” He lifted her chin and by the softening of his eyes, she knew he’d seen the tears swimming in her eyes.

“I’m fine,” she mumbled. “I just scared myself. I’ve never been that angry before. It just sprung up on me all of a sudden.”

Max rubbed her arm as she shakily poured herself another glass of champagne. “You gonna be okay?”

“Yeah,” she mumbled into her glass. “What was with that manager guy calling you “Mr. Evans?”

“Did I forget to mention that my parents own this restaurant? Hence the name Isabella, named after my older sister. I swear she thinks she owns the world just because she has a restaurant named after her.” Liz giggled as she leaned deep in his embrace.

“Um… you wanna slow down on the champagne?” Max said as she gulped down the rest of her glass. “We haven’t even had dinner yet.”

“Sorry. I’m just a little shaken.” Max comforted her and tried to take her mind off of Erick.

By the end of their dinner, Liz had consumed enough champagne to get her pretty drunk. Barely able to stand on her own, she leaned against Max outside of the restaurant as he tried to hail a cab and keep her from wandering off at the same time.

“Dis is why I don drink,” she slurred. “Last time I got drunk was in my freshman year an I woke up with two new tattoos,” she giggled.

“Little Miss Elizabeth has tattoos?” Max chuckled.

Liz shrugged out of Max’s hold and pulled up her shirt, showing off her cleavage and a butterfly tattoo on her right breast.

“Liz!” Max hissed as he pulled down her shirt. Again, she shrugged out of his hold and turned around, lifting up her shirt again to show off the rose on her lower back.

Liz faintly realized that people were stopping to stare, but she didn’t care. Her head was spinning and her tongue was heavy and before she knew it, she was being shoved into a cab.

“As much as I would like to see that tattoo again and your… assets, I’d rather you not show it on the busy streets of New York,” he told her.

Liz giggled and leaned against him. She could tell that he was still talking to her, but her head hurt too much to figure out what he was saying. Instead, she breathed in his fresh scent, closed her eyes and drifted off, feeling safe in his arms.
***********

Waking up in Max’s arms as he carried her into the elevator was the next thing Liz remembered. Nuzzling her nose against the cool fabric of his shirt, she tightened her arms around his neck as a wave of nausea hit her.

She felt a dull pounding in her head and she moaned, causing Max to turn his attention to her. “Hey,” he said with a soft smile. “I got a little worried when you conked out in the cab,” he commented with a quiet laugh. He kept his voice low, seemingly fully aware of her pounding headache and for that she was thankful.

“I’ll never drink ‘gain,” she groaned, wincing at the loudness of her own voice. Her nausea increased once the elevator was set in motion and her stomach flipped.

“I take it you’re not a big drinker,” he chuckled.

Struggling to keep her eyes open and the vomit rising in her throat down, Liz slowly shook her head. “I’ma sloppy drunk. You think I’ma sloppy drunk?” she slurred looking up at him with clouded eyes.

“Yes,” he laughed. “But I must admit that I’m no better than you are. Just promise you’ll take care of me when I’m the one stumbling and making a fool of myself.”

“Only if you can get me to a bafroom before I puke all over your shirt.”

He smiled as the elevator doors opened and he stepped out. “Deal.”

Max got her to the bathroom in time. He pulled back her hair and she faintly felt him stroking her back. When she finished, he appeared at her side with a glass of water and she thankfully drunk it down.

Her stomach finally settled and she noticed that Michael and Maria’s bathroom didn’t look the same as it did before she left to go to dinner with Max. She also wondered how he got into their apartment without a key. Michael or Maria hadn’t let them in. Had they?

The pounding in her head intensified and she decided that thinking wasn’t the best thing to do right now.

“You okay?” he asked as he kneeled before her.

Liz started to nod, but thought better of it when the room began to spin and she couldn’t get it to stop. She leaned forward, pressing her face into Max’s chest. She felt his arms embrace her and she relaxed into him. He smelled like soap and his chest was hard against her cheek. Pulling away slightly, she stared at the two opened buttons on his shirt and wondered what he looked like without it on.

She lifted her tiny hands and rested them on his chest. His muscles jumped beneath her finger tips as she ran them down to his waist and back up again. Her eyes drifted to his well-built arms before dropping lower. Her gazed lingered on the tent in his jeans before moving to his powerful thighs she knew he had.

“See anything you like?” he whispered in her ear. Her eyes met his and she raised her hand to his cheek. Her gaze flickered to where her thumb rested on his lips and she wanted to kiss him. She wondered what his lips tasted like and that was her last thought before she passed out for the night.
***********

Her raging headache and the urgency to get to the bathroom was the first thing Liz noticed when she awoke the next morning. The next thing was that she wasn’t on the couch in Michael and Maria’s apartment and that Max’s handsome face was just inches from hers, his muscled arm resting beneath her cheek. He was sleeping on top of the covers and his shirt was gone, but he still sported the same jeans he wore last night.

She tried to remember what happened last night, but every time she got close to remembering, it got blurry and harder to put the pieces together of how she got from the restaurant to Max’s bed.

Liz studied his heavy arm that was thrown over her waist, before moving to his sculpted chest. Her eyes dropped once more to his jeans and she squirmed at the sight of his boxers peeking out from his jeans. Before she had the chance to drool at the sight of his body, he stirred and she quickly snapped her eyes back to his face, afraid of being caught staring.

“Morning,” she said as his eyes fluttered open.

“Hey,” he grunted sleepily as his arm tightened around her. “I meant to sleep on the couch, but I kind of nodded off before I made it,” he laughed.

“It’s okay,” she smiled, but it quickly dropped when she felt the bile rise in her throat and she scrambled to get out of bed. She made it to the bathroom just in time before she heaved into the toilet.

Max appeared next to her with a glass of water and she took it gratefully. “This is exactly why I don’t drink,” she groaned as Max carried her back to his bed. “What happened to my clothes?” she asked him when she noticed that the oversized shirt she was wearing obviously wasn’t hers.

“Oh… Um, I just thought you might want to be comfortable.” Liz blushed at the thought of Max seeing her that way.

“Thank you… you know for taking care of me,” she shyly as she burrowed under the covers. It smelled like Max and she took in a deep breath to breathe in his scent. “I don’t drink very often and when I do, it takes very little to pull me under.”

“After you flashed everyone on the street, I kinda figured that,” he laughed. Liz groaned in embarrassment as Max continued to laugh at her. “You remember punching Erick?”

It was fuzzy, but she did remember doing that. “I don’t understand it. Why didn’t I see the real him? I mean, am I that unattractive that he had to go out and get someone else?”

Max laid next to her and brushed a strand of her hair behind her ear. Liz easily leaned into his caress. “Liz, believe me, you are not unattractive.”

“Because I know for a fact that if you hadn’t of puked your guts out just a few minutes ago, I would be hitting on you so hard right now,” he said seriously. Liz laughed and playfully slapped his arm. And she spent the rest of the day in his comforting presence.

TBC……..

I'll be back Wednesday! :wink:
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Wed Mar 09, 2005 7:19 pm

Hey everyone. Thanks for the wonderful fb. Today's my birthday!!! :D :D So here's another part for you. I hope you enjoy.


<center>Chapter 5</center>

Liz poked her head out of the bathroom to check if the coast was clear before she fled the room and into the hallway. She made a mad dash for the door, but she heard his heavy footsteps behind her just before his arms wrapped around her waist and he tossed her into the air.

“Max!!” she screamed as he tossed her over his shoulder, her back arched back in an uncomfortable position. With ease, he flipped her so that she was on her stomach, dangling over his shoulder like a sack of potatoes.

“Finally decided to show yourself, huh?” he said as he pinched her butt. Liz squealed and kicked her feet, hoping to catch him off balance so that she could get down.

“Max, let me down. You smell.”

“I wouldn’t smell if you hadn’t poured sour milk all over me now wouldn’t I?”

“You deserved it,” she protested. Liz had been trying to cook breakfast when their little feud had begun. Liz was normally a good cook, but with the minuscule amount of food that Max had in his refrigerator; it was tough for even her to make anything.

She had been trying to make omelets, when Max made the comment about her being so short, it reduced her ability to see over the stove to cook them right. Afterwards, Liz took the sour milk out of the refrigerator and doused his shirt with it before locking herself in the bathroom before he could retaliate.

Max dropped her onto the couch before following her, landing on top of her and pinning her down

“Max it smells under here!” she screamed as she squirmed beneath him

“Too bad. You’ll just have to suffer the consequences of what you did,” he retorted. Liz sighed, knowing she wasn’t going to be able to get up with him lying on top of her.

“I’m mad at you,” she pouted as he dropped his head to the crook of her neck.

“What’d I do?” he mumbled against her.

“You called me short.”

He lifted his head and stared down at her. “Well what was I supposed to call you? Tall?” he chuckled. “It's not nice to lie Lizzie,” he teased.

“I hate you.”

“Why? Because I’m tall?” he grinned.

“Big eared freak,” she mumbled. She heard him chuckling before he dropped his head and sunk his teeth into her neck. Liz yelped in surprise. “You’re so abusive. Why are you so mean to me Max?”

“Because I adore you Doll,” he said, grinning because he knew she hated it when he called her that. Or at least that was what she told him. She secretly loved that he had a nickname for her, but she wasn’t going to let him know that.

“Don’t call me that,” she moaned as she ruffled his hair, knowing he hated that just as much as she said she hated his nickname for her.

“Liz, don’t do that,” he whined. He sat up and spent a significant amount of time pouting and trying to fix it back perfectly as it was before, with his bangs falling over his forehead and into his eyes.

Once he was satisfied, he shifted and laid beside her, resting his head on her shoulder. She watched his fingers intertwine with hers. She marveled at how much larger his hand was compared to hers. He could completely close his around her tiny fist.

“You’re so tiny,” he said.

“We’ve already established that. No need to remind me,” she grumbled.

“Not in height. I mean like in general,” he said. He pressed his palm against hers. His fingers practically towered over hers. “You work today?” he asked her.

“Yeah. I have to leave in a little bit,” she said.

He lifted himself up on his elbow. “Come over tonight,” he told her.

“Don’t you have to work?”

“Yeah, but I don’t leave until twelve. I’ll be back before you wake up in the morning.”

“What? You’re not bringing home any company?” she said in shock.

“Why would I do that when I already have an angel waiting for me at home?” He smiled brightly for emphasis and Liz narrowed her eyes suspiciously. “Those lines don’t work on you huh?” he laughed.

“Nope. Sorry,” she giggled. Although she admitted to herself that if she thought he meant it then she would be melting in his arms right now. “I gotta go get ready,” she said as she pulled herself up. Max left the room and returned with her slippers. “Thanks.”

Max walked her to the door. “Call me before you come to make sure I’m here. Kyle and I are supposed to go play basketball.”

“Last time you said that you were up here with that Rhonda chick.”

A mischievous smirk formed on his lips and Liz fought the edge to slap him. “Well this is for real this time.”

“Mhmm. I’ll see you later.”

“Bye Liz.” He kissed her cheek before opening the door to let her out.

“Hey stranger. Where were you all night?” Maria questioned from the couch, where Liz rarely slept anymore, when she entered the apartment.

“Hanging out with Max.”

“Again!” Maria shrieked, giving Liz a weird look.

“What?”

“I’m just saying that you two have been hanging out a lot lately.”

“And we’ve been doing just that… hanging out,” Liz countered.

“Liz I don’t like how close you and Max have been getting. I mean, you’ve been sleeping over there almost every night.”

“Only when he doesn’t have company,” she protested. Maria gawked at her and Liz sighed, not having the time or energy to argue about this. “Look Maria, Max and I get along really well and we’re good friends. What’s wrong with sleeping in his bed for a couple of nights?” Liz snapped her mouth shut as soon as she realized what she’d said.

“You sleep in his bed!!? Liz have you not noticed that you’re in the middle of a divorce and Max… well he’s out chasing anyone wearing a skirt. You’re setting yourself up to get hurt,” Maria claimed.

Liz knew all of that, but she still didn’t see what the problem was. She and Max were friends. He understood her and she understood him… minus the sleeping around aspect of his life. Why was everyone so cautious about her being FRIENDS with Max?

“Maria how could you say that? You don’t even know Max well enough. How would I get hurt if we’re JUST FRIENDS? Which we are JUST FRIENDS. And we always will be JUST FRIENDS,” she stated. “Do you see a pattern here? Maybe between the words JUST and FRIENDS?”

“Look Liz. I’m not trying to be mean or anything. You’re right. I don’t know Max well, but I saw how quickly you fell for Erick and you see how that ended up. I don’t want you to go through that again.”

Liz sighed, realizing that Maria was just trying to look out for her. “I know you don’t and I don’t either. But that’s not going to happen. I’m not going to fall for Max. He’s not my type,” she explained. “Besides, Max is too busy with all the other women in New York.”

Maria cracked a smile and mumbled, “True.”

The two women shared a laugh before Liz got ready for work, while she pushed the giddy feeling at the thought of Max away and made herself believe what she told Maria was true.
*********

After changing her clothes, Liz headed up to Max’s apartment. She had called him on her cell phone as soon as she left the hospital and he told her to head over there.

Liz softly knocked on the door and she heard Kyle yelling on the other side, telling her it was open.

“Hey Kyle.” He got up to embrace her.

“Who is this beauty queen coming into my apartment and gracing me with her presence?” he said with a smile. As much as Liz was over here, she didn’t see Kyle much. He was always out, working and doing only God knows what. But whenever she did see him, he always made it his mission to make her feel good.

Liz ducked her head as her cheeks burned when she blushed. “Looking for your partner in crime?” he asked her.

“Yeah.”

“He’s in his room, sulking because I beat him, of course. Why my little brother thought he could beat me in basketball is something I’ll never understand,” he gloated. “Do me a favor and rub it in his face for me?”

Liz laughed. “Will do,” she said as she started down the hall way. Liz knocked on Max’s door before she walked in. He was asleep on his side, his back turned to her. Climbing on his bed, she leaned over him and kissed his cheek.

“Max,” she called as she climbed over him. He stirred and his eyes fluttered open. “Hey sleepyhead.”

“Mmm. What a beautiful face to wake up to,” he said as he wrapped his arms around her.

“How was the game?”

“Fine. I won.”

“I was just talking to Kyle,” she said. She laughed when he scowled and begin to ramble on about how Kyle was cheating and he should’ve won because he has at least three inches in height on Kyle.

“Get over it Max. You suck and that's all there is to it,” she told him. Max retaliated by tickling her until she begged for his forgiveness.

Later, Max and Liz went out for dinner and after stuffing themselves full, they headed back to the apartment.

“My court date is in a month,” Liz announced as she climbed into Max’s bed with one of his large shirts on. “Did I tell you that?”

Max flopped on his stomach beside her. “No. Nervous already?”

“No. I’m ready to get this over with. But I realized something… You feel like hearing me vent?”

He smiled reassuringly. “Vent away.”

“Okay, so…. All this time, I thought I was in love with Erick. I thought that he was the one that I wanted to be with and wanted to have a family with when that wasn’t true. I realized that I wasn’t in love with him at all. I was just in love with the whole idea of being in love…" Liz paused and Max nodded his head, showing her he understood.

"Erick came and he seemed like the perfect guy I could make all of my dreams come true with. And what was wrong with our relationship was that we were never friends. We just jumped into this relationship and we never got to know each other even though we were together for so long. Maybe I knew that he wasn’t the person I was supposed to be with so I never made the effort to know him and he didn’t care so he never wanted to know me…does this make sense or am I going crazy?”

“I understand,” Max said, encouraging her to go on.

“I wanted to be in love and be loved so bad that I latched on to the first guy that came my way. I wanted that happily ever after so much that I convinced myself that Erick was the perfect guy for me. The first time I suspected that he was cheating, I ignored it, and I made myself believe that he could never do that to me because we were so perfect together and I was going to get my fairy tale with him. I guess that came back to bite me in the ass huh?”

“Liz you wanted what everybody wants. You wanted love and no one can blame you for that.”

“Is that what you want Max?” He was silent and the only response she got was a shrug of his shoulders. “I mean, do you believe in soulmates? What do you look for in a girl?”

He hesitated before he spoke. “You want the truth?” At Liz’s nod, he continued. “My soulmate is any girl that has a nice ass and big breasticles,” he deadpanned.

“Breasticles. What are breasticles?”

He rolled his eyes as if it were the most obvious thing in the world. “Men have testicles and women have breasticles,” he explained. “You know, the things you flashed to the entire city last week. Those,” he poked her breast and chuckled when Liz’s mouth fell open in shock as she covered her breast with her hands.

“You’re a perv you know that right?” He smiled wickedly in response and Liz rolled her eyes, kicking herself for thinking that Max could look at a girl and see anything past the breasts and butt. “Max, can’t you be serious?”

“I am. Why stay with just one woman and exclude all the others?”

“Assuming all others would want a night in the sack with you?” she said, her irritation growing every time he opened his mouth.

“Yeah.”

Liz gave up on trying to understand and she and rolled over, snuggling under the covers.

“What? What’d I do?”

“Nothing,” she mumbled. With that, Liz closed her eyes and waited for sleep to take her.

TBC……

Be back Sunday. :wink:
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Sun Mar 13, 2005 3:37 pm

<center>Chapter 6</center>

Liz dropped onto the couch with a disgruntled sigh. She’d just recieved the papers in the mail: her marriage was now officially over. Though she was happy that it was over, she just never imagined that she’d be twenty-one and divorced.

In the bedroom, she could hear Maria and Michael going at it… Again. Though she appreciated her friends for letting her sleep on their couch for the last three months, she really needed to get away from them. They didn’t complain about her living with them for so long, but she knew that they’d be happy to know they’d get their apartment to themselves again. She couldn’t stand to see their blossoming relationship while hers quickly went down the toilet.

Liz pulled herself up and headed into the bathroom to change before she left the apartment and headed upstairs.

She and Max had gotten so close in the last three months that she’d even go so far as to call him her best friend. They just clicked when they were together and he let her be herself. With school starting up again last month, she was able to get away from the stress of her classes and her chaotic divorce. Max was her escape and sometimes she wondered if it as supposed to be this easy to talk to someone. Liz was always a private person, but with Max, it just felt different.

Liz entered the apartment unannounced as she had been doing for the last three months. “Max, I need to talk to…Oh jeez! I’m sorry,” Liz screeched as she spotted a woman’s naked chest lying underneath Max on the couch. The two scrambled to cover themselves and Liz quickly headed for the door. This was the fourth time this happened this week. When would she learn not to come up here at all?

“Liz! Wait,” Max called out. Liz stopped, but kept her back towards them as she heard the ruffling of clothes being zipped up and snapped on. She rolled her eyes in annoyance. “Um… you can turn around now.”

“Figures,” Liz muttered to herself when she took a good look at the girl. She was, tall, blonde and had big breasts much like all the other girls Max and the rest of the male population went for.

Max cleared his throat and shifted uncomfortably. “Liz this is uh…. Um….”

“Veronica,” the girl said.

“Right. This is Veronica and Veronica, this is Liz.” The two women shook hands and smiled politely, through Liz would've like nothing more than to slap that stupid smile off her face.

“Nice to meet you,” Veronica said. Liz only smiled and watched as Max took Veronica’s hand and lead her towards the door.

Liz slumped on the couch, but then thought better of it and moved to the recliner as Max saw Veronica out.

“What’s up Doll?” A still shirtless Max asked her as he took a seat on the couch.

“Barely four in the afternoon and you’re already answering booty calls,” Liz commented. “I thought you were going to study today.”

He shrugged innocently. “I was. I went to the library and met Veronica and I got a little off track,” he said with a chuckle.

“You really should warn people if you’re going to have naked girls over here in the middle of the day,” Liz said somewhat angrily.

“I had a rubber band hanging on the door,” he clarified. Again Liz rolled her eyes and reclined the chair back.

Max went into the kitchen and returned with a bottle of water for her. “What’s wrong?”

“Well I’m single now. I’m plain old Liz Parker again,” she said with a small smile. "I got the papers today."

“And you’re okay with that? You sound disappointed.”

“I just haven’t been single for nearly four years. I don’t know what to do with myself,” she explained.

“So this means we can hook up now? I’ve seen the way you look at me Lizzie. I see the desire in your eyes.” He wiggled his eyebrows and Liz shook her head.

“Desire! Ha, that’s just me in shock over how gigantic your ears are.” Max threw a pillow at her and she giggled quietly.

“So, what’s with the pout?"

“I’m not pouting.”

“You were when you came in.”

“I really need to find my own apartment. If I have to hear that damn headboard banging against the wall and Maria screaming out….”

Max rushed over to her and clamped his hand down on her mouth before she could say anything more. “Please. I feel sorry for you and all and I’ll do anything to help you, but please spare me the details of Michael and Maria’s sexcapades.”

Liz removed his hand from her mouth as he squeezed into the space beside her. “I’m serious,” she whined. “Do you know how depressing it is to live with them and see them so happy when I’m so miserable?” She laid her head on his shoulder and he wrapped his arms around her. She sighed with content in his embrace.

“Well, why don’t you move in with me?” he said, taking her off guard.

“Excuse me?”

“Move up here with me,” he repeated, “You’re up here all the time anyway.”

“What about Kyle? You do know you only have a two bedroom apartment don’t you?”

His smile grew wider and Liz wondered what was going on in that head of his. “Kyle’s moving out. He’s headed back to Florida to help with my parents with the company. He’s really into it and he’s going to take over when they retire. It’s perfect timing really. Now I won’t have to move.”

“What?!” she shrieked. “You were looking for a new place and you didn’t tell me? When exactly were you planning to move?”

“In a week,” he answered sheepishly.

“A week! So when is Kyle supposed to be leaving?” she asked him.

“In a couple of days.”

“And when were you planning on informing me of this?”

He paused a beat before answering. “Today. I was going to tell you today.” He flashed his best charming smile and Liz could only roll her eyes. “Okay, so that one small little detail slipped my mind and I forgot to tell you.”

Liz snorted as she reached for the remote to the T.V. “Yeah right.”

“Hey, I can’t keep up with everything that I don’t tell you. I’ll have you know that I’ve been very busy these last couple of weeks.”

“Busy doing what?”

“Doing Paula, Sara, Jennifer, Vanessa… oh and I would’ve did what’s her name a few minutes ago if somebody hadn’t barged in and interrupted,” he teased.

“Only five girls? You’re losing your touch Evans,” she retorted.

“Yeah well, if I sat here and named all the girls I’ve been doing, we’d be here until next year now won’t we?” he gloated as he wiggled his eyebrows.

“You are so disgusting,” she exclaimed as she jumped from his arms and moved to the couch.

“I wouldn’t sit there if I were you,” he laughed.

Liz immediately jumped up. “Eww!! You’re sure a perv!” she squealed. “I’m getting out of here.”

Max laughed as he jumped up and caught her arm before she could reach the door. “I’m kidding.” He pulled her over to the couch where she reluctantly sat down. “So how about it Doll? You wanna move in?”

“I don’t know. If you’re going to be bringing half naked women home like what’s her name…”

“Okay, if I do bring someone home with the intension of sexual activity, we’ll just stay in my room. You’ll never have to worry about seeing someone like what’s her name.”

“I don’t want to hear them either,” she muttered.

“Come on Liz. You know this is the perfect solution.”

Liz sighed, knowing damn well that she couldn’t pass the offer up. She looked at Max, who was smiling goofily and wiggling his eyebrows suggestively. What the hell was she getting herself into?

“Fine, but if I ever see you doing someone on this couch, I’m kicking your ass,” she warned.

He held his hands up in surrender. “Noted.” Liz kicked off her shoes and draped her legs across Max’s lap.

The two watched T.V. in a comfortable silence as Max slowly stroked the bottom of her foot with the tip of his finger. Liz giggled quietly, sending Max a playful warning glare before she turned back to the T.V.

“Liz is there any chance that you like to walk around the apartment naked?” he asked her with a straight face. Liz smacked him in the face with the throw pillow, leaving him pouting as she happily returned her attention back to the T.V.
************

It was past eight when Liz finally decided to leave Max, who was currently passed out in her lap. She eased her way from underneath him, kissed his cheek and headed for the door.

“Hey Liz,” Kyle greeted her as he stepped out of the elevator.

“Hi Kyle. I heard about you moving to Florida. Congratulations.”

“Thanks. I can’t wait to get back home and start working. But it’s a shame that you and I didn’t get a chance to get to know each other that well,” he told her. “Maybe if my brother weren’t hogging you all the time…”

Liz blushed as she bit her lip. “Yeah. We’ve gotten pretty close in these last couple of months.”

“So are you…”

Liz immediately knew what he was thinking. She’d been asked that a lot. “No we’re not together,” she said.

“Figures. He could never spot the good girls. Even when they were right under his nose,” Kyle muttered. “Max always gets these ditzy girls that are totally incapable of anything but sex.”

“Maybe that’s why he hooks up with them,” Liz reasoned.

“Yeah.” His hand floated up to her face and he tucked a loose strand of her hair behind her ear. “Unlike my younger brother, I wouldn’t be spending my time with other girls, but doing all I can to court you.”

Liz’s cheeks burned terribly then and she found herself leaning into Kyle’s caress as he gently stroked her cheek.

The elevator chimed behind him as the doors opened and it snapped Liz out of her daze.

“Oh… I… I have to go,” she said as she slid around him and into the elevator.

“See you around Liz,” he called as the doors closed. She breathed a sigh of relief and wondered what it was about the Evan’s boys that made her so crazy.

“Well look who finally decided to show up!” Michael exclaimed as Liz walked into the apartment. “Where have you been?”

“With Max,” she answered as she settled next to him on the couch. “Kyle’s moving out and he asked me to move in with him. So you and Maria will get your apartment back to yourselves in a couple of days. I could kick his ass for not telling me sooner though.”

Michael gave her a funny look before turning towards the T.V. “What? Why is it that every time I say that I’m with Max, you and Maria give me that look? It’s perfectly normal for a guy and a girl to be friends.”

“Yeah, but this is Max we’re talking about. He’s totally incapable of “just being friends” with a girl.”

“Well he's friends with me so I guess that disproves your point," she retorted.

Michael shrugged his shoulders and simply said, “Okay.”

Liz frowned as she watched him with a curious eye. “What’s that supposed to mean?”

“I’m just saying that in the four years that I’ve known Maxwell, he’s never just been friends with a woman. I’ve never seen him act the way he does when he’s around you,” he explained.

“How does he act around me?”

“Just be careful Liz.”

“We’re just friends.”

Michael returned his attention to the football game, leaving Liz to wonder what the hell he meant. She did find it strange that Max never gave her the intension that he wanted to sleep with her. Though they did joke about them getting together, he never tried anything with her.

The shrill ringing of the phone broke her out of her thoughts and she reached for the cordless phone on the coffee table.

“Hello?”

“Liz?” Max’s sleepy voice sounded on the other end. “Where’d you go?”

“You fell asleep. What’s her name must’ve wore you out,” she teased.

“Oh. Well get your cute ass back up here!” he demanded. “I’m cooking dinner.”

“You? Fixing dinner?”

“I know. Crazy right?” he chuckled. “And it’s not microwavable.”

“Well in that case, I’ll be right up.”

“He’s cooking dinner?” Michael questioned as Liz hung up.

“Yeah. You and Maria want to come up?”

“Nah. We’ll let you two have your little romantic tryst,” he said. Liz smacked him lightly on his chest before saying her goodbyes and heading back upstairs.

Twenty minutes later, Max and Liz were enjoying a nice chicken with macaroni and cheese dinner, considering that was the only thing that he knew how to cook without burning down the building.

“That was surprisingly good,” Liz commented after going back for seconds.

“What can I say? I’m a master in the kitchen,” he gloated as he came behind her and wrapped his arms around her waist.

Liz molded perfectly against his chest, her head tucked neatly underneath his chin. In a weird way, he made her feel special, which was totally ironic when he slept with so many girls. He was not the type of guy she was supposed to be hanging around.

Liz headed into the bathroom to change then. She wore a pair of Max’s shorts and one of his shirts as pajamas. She had to roll the shorts up at the waist and she practically drowned in the shirt, but she loved the fact that his scent now completely surrounded her.

Max was already in bed, dressed in a t-shirt and boxers, when she returned.

“What?” she said when she noticed him staring as she walked into the room.

“Nothing.” Liz laid next to him, knowing that he’d pull her into his embrace. “Night Liz.” He kissed her temple and her cheek before pressing his forehead against hers.

“Goodnight Max,” she whispered as she drifted off into a peaceful sleep.

TBC……….

Be back Wednesday
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:19 pm

Hey everyone. Sorry about the wait. I have to literally kick my computer for it to start up now :roll: At least it's working. :lol: Anyway here's a brand new part and I'll be back Sunday with another one. I hope you enjoy!! :D

<center>Chapter 7</center>

The sun’s rays shined through the window, streamed across the room and gently touched Liz’s face. She stirred, her eyes fluttering open to find the most striking color of brown she’d ever seen staring at her.

“Morning Doll,” Max said.

“How long have you been up?” she queried as she snuggled deeper into his embrace. He was propped up on his elbow, gazing down at her with a slight smile.

“I’m just getting up,” he said. As much as she knew Max loved to lay around in bed before getting up, she knew he’d been up for awhile.

“You were watching me sleep,” she accused playfully.

“No I wasn’t,” he retorted though she knew that he knew he was caught.

“See anything interesting?”

He smirked. “You know you talk in your sleep?” Liz’s eyes widened in horror. Had she said something embarrassing? Did he know that sometimes she dreamt of him? “Now from what I can gather, you were dreaming of clown-like thing chasing you down a deserted road before very handsome, very muscular gentleman… oh let’s call him Max just for the sake of things... comes and sweeps you off your feet and saves the day.”

Liz just about sighed in relief. “You’re my knight and shining armor. How was I ever safe without you by my side?” she expressed dramatically.

“I have no idea. Aren’t you glad I’m here to protect you from clowns and all the other evils in the world?”

Liz laughed and tousled his neatly combed hair. He growled and rolled on top of her, playfully biting her neck. Liz maneuvered beneath him, taking him in a headlock.

“Liz stop!!” he moaned as she ruffled his hair until it stuck up in all directions. He wiggled his fingers against her side, causing her squirm with laugher and he easily slipped out of her hold. They twisted in the sheets as she wrestled with him, but she couldn’t match his strength and soon, his heavy weight was lying on top of her.

He intertwined his fingers with hers and pinned her hands above her head. “This is not the way a knight is supposed to treat his damsel Max,” she said as she squirmed beneath him.

“You started it,” he protested. Liz started to laugh, but quickly cut herself off when she realized that the playful gleam in his eyes were gone. He stared at her with a look she couldn’t quite decipher. She watched as his eyes dropped lower and his tongue darted out to wet his lips. His eyes glazed over as he leaned down and it suddenly struck her what was happening.

He was going to kiss her.

And Liz didn’t know if that was what she wanted. Max was her best friend. Did she really want to cross that line with him? She didn’t think she had a choice. Max had his eyes set on her and with the way he was looking at her, she couldn’t stop him if she tried.

“Max, you up?” A knock at his bedroom door disturbed the moment before she could move and she turned as Kyle flung open the door, his look turning into one of surprise. “Oh… sorry. Liz I didn’t know you were here.”

Embarrassed, Liz struggled to get from underneath Max, but he didn’t move. “Max!” she hissed when he continued to stare at her. He glanced at Kyle before rolling away from her.

“What is it Kyle?” Max asked his brother, his tone more than a little annoyed.

“I was going out for breakfast. You two want anything?”

“Yeah, thanks Kyle,” he said. Max and Liz gave him their orders and before he left the two alone again.

Liz didn’t want to look at him. What they had almost done… she found herself wondering what it would feel like.

Chancing a glance at him, she was startled to find him looking right back at her. “What?” she shrieked. “Why are you staring at me like that?

One side of his mouth twitched upwards in a small smirk and he propped himself on his elbow so he could look down at her. “You know you’re my best friend?”

She nodded. “And you’re mine.”

“I just wanted to make sure that you knew,” he said.

Liz smiled. “You’re weird, you know?”

He mirrored her smile and shifted so that he was laying on his back. “I’ve never had a best friend before,” he confessed.

Liz rolled over to face him, interested in this knew information. She and Max talked all the time, but then it seemed like there was so much more to learn about him and vice versa.

“You haven’t?”

“I mean I’ve had close friends and all, people I’ve known for years, but never any that I could really trust like you would a best friend you know? I’ve never considered anyone my best friend.” He turned his head and smiled brightly at her. “I guess you feel pretty honored huh?”

“I do,” she giggled. “I can just picture you in high school, strutting down the halls. You were one of the jocks weren’t you?”

“Actually I was in the president of the science club and on the chess club.”

“Are you making fun of me?” she exclaimed, regretting that she ever told Max that information about herself.

“Yes,” he laughed. “It’s just too funny. Why can’t I picture you on the chess club? It’s seems so you, but then it doesn’t.”

“I wasn’t technically on the team… I mean I went to one tournament, got embarrassed that I was actually showing up and never went again. But mark my words; I could kick your ass so bad in chess Evans.”

“I’ll give you that one Doll.”

“So be for real. What were you like in high school?”

“Okay so I wasn’t in the chess or science club, but I wasn’t a jock. If you can believe it, I was a quiet kid in high school, especially in my freshman and sophomore year.”

“Seriously? What happened to that guy? You think you can bring him back?” she joked.

“You’re not funny,” he declared as he sent her a playful glare.

“So what happened junior and senior year?”

He frowned and a dark shadow fell over his features. “I guess you could say that I came out of my shell.” He turned to her then, his eyes looking somewhere over her head, his mouth opening as to say something before closing again. She waited for him to say something, but instead, he smiled and met her gaze. “So, only two more days and you’ll officially be my roommate,” he said cheerfully.

“I know. How am I going to stay sane while living with you?” she giggled.

“You’re excited and you know it,” he mumbled as he rolled over and nuzzled his nose against her neck.

Liz wrapped her arms around him and buried her fingers in his hair. She could’ve sworn that she felt his lips brushing against her collarbone and then her neck, but she decided it was just her imagination

He suddenly lifted his head and moved his hand to stroke her hair. “Liz… are you… are you sure you want to move in with me?” he asked as he picked at the invisible lent on the bed spread.

“Yeah. Why wouldn’t I be?”

He shifted uncomfortably. Liz had never seen him like this before. “I mean, you know I bring home a lot of girls and I want to make sure that you’re okay with that… I mean… this is going to be your home too and I want you to be comfortable… I mean you may not be… comfortable that is… with a strange girl just a few feet away from you.”

He lowered his gaze as he continued to pick a hole in the bedspread. Liz smiled and brushed his bangs from his forehead. She was touched that he was actually concerned about how she would feel.. “Max Evans, rambling? I thought I’d never see the day,” she giggled. He smiled and raised his eyes to meet hers and she thought she owed it to him to be straightforward.

“Max, to be honest, you’re right. I don’t know if I would be comfortable. I mean the way you live your life… I don’t really understand it and I could just separate myself from it while i'm living somewhere else. But once I’m moved in, this is my home and there’s no where for me to go… you know?”

He nodded and rested his head next to hers on the pillow. Liz rolled over to face him and entwined her legs with his beneath the sheets. “So what’s your proposition?”

“Proposition? Such an awfully big word for such a small girl,” he teased.

“Max…” she sighed.

“Okay. How about this… Since I hold you so dear to my heart and you are my best friend, I’ll refrain from bringing home anyone on the nights before you have class. And if you just happen to have class the next day, we’ll go to her place or find somewhere else to go.”

“Even though that last part is disgusting, you’d do that for me?”

“Yeah. Anything for you Doll.” He leaned in and kissed her cheek.

Liz smiled just as she heard the front door opening and Kyle calling for them. He smiled once more before holding out his hand to her and pulling her with him out of the room.
********

“Maria, I swear if you give me that look one more time, I won’t be responsible for my actions!” Liz hissed as she folded the blanket that was previously lying on the couch.

“A little hostile are we?” she teased with a knowing smirk. “I just want to make sure that you know what you’re doing. I admit that I had my doubts. I’ve gotten to know Max. And though his explorations sicken me, he’s a decent guy. But don’t think I won’t kick his ass if he hurts you.”

“Hur… How is he supposedly going to hurt me? You know you’ve been talking in riddles all day and I seriously have yet to figure out one.”

“God! Liz, are you that blind? Do you not see that Max likes you and you like him?”

“Maria…”

“Liz. Seriously come on. Don’t you find it somewhat strange that you’re the only girl… well besides me, but I don’t count in this equation….that’s he’s actually friends with? He hasn’t put the moves on you; he hasn’t tried to get in your pants… that should send some kind of alarm in that confused, blinded by the ‘just friends’ card head of yours.”

“Yeah. That’s he’s not interested in anything but a friendship from me.”

“And what about you? Are you interested?”

Liz gaped at her friend, having been caught off guard by the question. “T-That’s not the point,” she countered. Maria laughed and Liz rolled her eyes.

“I’m not saying hook up with him. I’m just making sure that you’re aware of what’s obviously there.”

“This conversation is officially closed. I will no longer discuss this.”

“Fine,” Maria said as she shrugged her shoulders.

Max and Michael walked into the apartment then after taking the last of Liz’s bags upstairs. “Hey you,” Max said, making quick strides to Liz’s side. “You belong upstairs with me now.” Picking her up around her waist, he tossed her over his shoulder, ignoring her squeals and protests.

“Liz and I are going to have a movie night tonight, you guys want to join?” Max asked before walking through the door.

“Sure. I’ll bring the beer,” Michael offered. Liz glared harshly at Maria as she fluttered her eyelashes and mouthed the words ‘Max and Liz forever’ behind Max’s back.

“Alright. See you tonight.”

“Max will you put me down now,” Liz whined as he walked into the elevator. “Max!!” she shrieked when he ignored her.

He slapped her butt and she retaliated by slapping his. “Shush. It’s tradition for the man to carry the woman over the threshold.”

“Yes. When they get married and they don’t handle them like they’re in caveman times,” she protested

He didn’t respond. Instead, he kicked open the door and made a beeline to her new bedroom. Max and Liz went with Kyle to the airport to see him off this morning, before returning to move Liz in.

He tossed her onto the bed. “My new room huh?” she sighed as she glanced around the space.

“I have to get to work. I'll bring some movies back on my way home.”

“Max do not get any scary movies. You know I can’t handle it,” she warned him, knowing that he was going to do just that just because watching them tortured her. He just smiled mischeivously.

“Bye Liz.” He kissed her cheek and disappeared through the door.
***********

Liz buried herself deep under the blanket and smashed her face against Max’s chest as she silently cursed him. She had specifically told him NOT to bring home any scary movies. Instead, he choose to bring home The Ring, The Grudge and Darkness Falls; all movies that she was terrified of.

“Look Liz, this is the best part,” Max said, trying to loosen her tight hold she had on his shirt.

“Best part my ass,” she muttered.

Liz peeked from beneath the blanket and glanced at Maria and Michael, who were cuddled up on the love seat, completely enthralled in the movie. She heard the music from the T.V. grow more thrilling and she couldn’t help but look. She screamed as soon a she saw the screen, startling everyone else in the room.

“Liz, nothing even happened,” Michael laughed.

Max chuckled above her, but quickly shut up when Liz shot him a ruthless glare.

Relief flooded through her when the last movie ended and Maria cut on the lights, but she still kept her grip on Max.

Max pried himself out of Liz’s grip to see Michael and Maria out while Liz buried herself underneath the blanket.

“Ready for bed?” She nearly jumped out of her seat at the sound of Max’s voice behind her.

“Max! You’re doing that on purpose!” she hissed as she smacked his chest.

“Doing what?” he queried innocently. “What’d I do?”

“I told you not to get any scary movies, but you did it anyway. You just wanted to torture me,” she accused as she followed him into his bedroom.

“Yeah. So what’s your point?” He chuckled at the astonished look on her face.

“I hate you, you know?”

“Not news to me Doll.” He winked before she stalked out of the room.

She turned on the lamp before she changed into her pajamas. It was eerily silent to her, though it was only in her mind. She stared at the large empty bed and the darkness creeping from underneath it and the dark corners of the room and it proved too much for her. It was just a horror scene ready to happen and she quickly made a beeline for Max’s room.

He was already in bed when she barged in and she quickly crawled under the sheets and into his arms.

He stroked her long hair and rubbed her back in soothing circles. “I’m sorry for scaring you,” he said as she cuddled closer to his warm chest. “Does this mean you don’t hate me?” Even in the dark, she could tell that he had that smirk on his face.

“No,” she pouted. “But I need you to be my knight in shining armor right now.”

“Always Doll,” he whispered as he planted a kiss at the top of her head. “Always.”

TBC……….

See you Sunday. :wink:
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Sun Mar 20, 2005 3:55 pm

New part as promised. I hope you enjoy.

<center>Chapter 8</center>

Liz awoke as the body next to her stirred and she opened her eyes to find Max’s gorgeous face just inches from hers. She felt his stubble as she gently trailed her finger of his defined jaw line.

Liz had been living with Max for almost a week now and she had yet to sleep in her own bed. She had grown so accustomed to falling asleep with his arms around her, keeping her safe at night, that she didn’t think she could fall asleep without him.

What she found odd was that Max had gone a week without bringing anyone home. Though she found it strange, she admitted to herself that she was quite happy over that and decided that she wouldn’t question it and instead, just enjoy having Max to herself when he came home at night.

The phone shrilling on the night stand broke her out of her thoughts and she rolled out of Max’s embrace to answer it.

“Hello?”

“Max?” A woman’s voice answered.

“No, this is Liz?”

“Oh hi Liz. This is Isabel, Max’s sister. You’re the one that moved in with him right?”

“Yeah,” Liz mumbled as she fell back against the pillows.

“Is my dimwitted brother around? I need to rip into him for a few minutes. Asshole didn’t even remember my birthday.”

“Hold on.” Liz cursed herself as she rolled over and nudged Max, who was still sound asleep. She knew she’d forgotten to do something two days ago. She had offered to mail Isabel’s birthday card for Max and had completely forgotten about it. She was in so much trouble.

“What?” Max mumbled into his pillow as he came awake.

“Isabel’s on the phone and she’s pissed at you.”

“What’d I do?” Max groaned as he took the phone from her. “Hello?... Isabel I didn’t forget your birthday… I sent you a twenty dollar birthday card…. What do you mean you never got it? I sent Liz…. No… Of course I love you…. No I don’t want you to kick my ass…” Max looked towards Liz and she covered her face with the sheets. “Yes… Tell Mom, I don’t care….I’m not scared of her…Fine I’ll send you something else….I love you too….Bye.”

Liz heard the click of the phone before the sheets were ripped off her and she found herself staring at an angry Max. “Well would you look at the time,” she said as she looked at her wrist as if she had on a watch. “I need to get out here and… and just go.”

Liz scurried out of bed, and into the safe haven of her room.
**********

Liz sighed with relief as she pressed print and watched her finished paper glide out of the printer. It took about a dozen cups of coffee and an all-nighter, but she finally finished her paper. It wasn’t due until next week, but she had to finish it before it bugged the hell out of her.

She glanced at her watch and saw that it was two in the morning. She turned off her lap top and unplugged the printer that she and Max shared. Just as she began picking up the many crumpled papers that littered the floor, the door opened revealing Max and some red head hanging on his arm.

“Hey Doll. You still up?”

“I wanna see your room. Where’s your room Maxie,” the redhead cooed.

Clearly drunk, the two stumbled down the hallway, leaving Liz standing in shock until she heard Max’s bedroom door close and the high pitched giggles of the full figured redhead.

She’d known he was bringing someone home. He’d called to warn her just as he said he was going to do. But she assumed it was a false alarm as was the other calls he’d made the past few days. Instead of bringing a busty girl home, he ended up cuddling with her in her bed.

Pissed off, Liz finished cleaning up before stomping into her room and slamming the door shut, disappointed in herself for getting this upset and thinking that Max’s lack of explorations would last.

The next morning, Liz found herself completely worn out, having stayed up most of the night, wondering what Max and his date were doing, though she had a pretty good idea.

But it wasn’t her business, she reminded herself. And because of that, she got even angrier.

Liz irritably flipped her pancake and practically beat the butter onto her toast. She fixed her plate and sat at the table just as Max staggered into the kitchen, looking like hell.

“Hangovers suck,” he mumbled. Liz flinched as he bent down to kiss her cheek before stealing a piece of her toast.

“Max, I am eating here! Fix your own breakfast.”

“What’s up with you?”

“Nothing. I’d just appreciate it if you’d ask before you take something off my plate,” she said curtly.

“You never minded before,” he protested as he stole another piece. At Liz’s glare, the slight smile on his face dropped. “What? Were we too loud last night?” Liz didn’t answer, but instead, continued with her breakfast.

She couldn’t hear anything but a few giggles and the redhead had left sometime during the night. Liz assumed that Max was finished with her and would be looking for someone new again tonight.

“Look, Doll, I’m sorry if I kept you up last night. I’ll be quieter next time, okay?” Liz still refused to respond. “Okay. Be angry. I’m taking a shower.”

Liz finished her breakfast before she got her lap top and booted it up. She heard the shower spray and Liz sighed in frustration. She didn’t have the slightest clue as to why she was angry with Max. What he did with his life and his body was his own business and she had no control over him.

Once the computer was booted up, she clicked on the Internet and practically fell out of her chair at what popped on to the screen. Cheesy music and two naked girls humping each other as some overly buff guy stood in the background watching while he jerked off popped onto her screen. Liz slapped a hand over her eyes as she blindly clicked to close the screen.

Liz peeked out from behind her fingers, but immediately closed her eyes again as another video popped onto the screen. After getting her self together, Liz found a folder full of videos and promptly deleted it from her hard drive.

“Liz!!” Max screamed from the bathroom.

Liz closed her laptop, knowing exactly who put all the porn on her computer. She’d leant her computer to Max last week while his was getting fixed.

Max came storming out of the bathroom, his body dripping wet and a meager towel wrapped around his waist. Liz gaped at him before letting her anger take over.

“I can’t believe you!” she cried.

“I can’t believe you!!” he retorted.

“You downloaded a folder full of porn on my computer! What the fuck is the matter with you!?”

“You used my razor!!” he yelled just as loudly. Liz paused a beat, not sure that he was actually angry over that.

“And you can compare that to the porn that unexpectedly popped onto my screen! That's going to haunt me forever!!”

“Yeah, well who wants to pick up their favorite razor and find someone else’s little hairs stuck in the blade? You couldn’t even clean it out just like you forgot to mail Isabel’s birthday card!” he shouted, his brown eyes darkening. She stepped closer to him until she was in his face, glaring forcefully at him. Max stared back just as intensely, his gaze never wavering from hers.

His eyes softened first though, after a few moments of intensive staring. His shoulders slumped and he backed away. “Liz, I’m sorry about the porn. I just watched that one and I didn’t think it would install a folder full of it.” Liz crossed her arms and lowered her gaze. “I can get your computer upgraded to make it up to you,” he said as he wiggled his eyebrows up and down and bumped her with his elbow as if that was the best offer in the world.

“I’m sorry too, but you don’t have to do that.”

“I want to.”

Liz couldn’t help but smile. “Only if you let me buy you a new razor.”

“Deal,” he laughed. They shook on it and it was then that she remembered that he was standing in only a towel, his chest still glistening and his hair dripping water down the back of his neck and over his smiling face. She refused to look at anymore of him and she forced herself to turn away.

“So I’m going to... go back… in the bathroom I mean,” he said as he hiked his thumb in the direction of the bathroom.

“Yeah. Um… I’m just gonna go and get the mail,” she said, gesturing to the door.

“Good.”

“Yeah.”

“Great.”

Liz backed up until her back hit the door and she quickly hurried out of the apartment. Her cheeks flaming red and her temperature some degrees higher than it should be, Liz headed downstairs for the mail.
*********

“Welcome, Max Evans to your first cooking lesson,” Liz said. “I’m Liz Parker and I’ll be your teacher.”

“That sounds a little kinky doesn’t it? You can be the sexy, young subsitute teacher and I'll be the ill-tempered, deliquent teen in detention.”

“Let me remind you that if any time you decide to make a comment like that, the hamburger won’t be the only meat cooking over that fire.”

Max raised his eyebrows in surprise as he threw up his hands in surrender. “Hey, you’re the boss. I’m just your pupil.”

Liz rolled her eyes as she took his hand and led him into the kitchen. Liz was fed up with having to be the one that always cooked seeing as Max didn’t know how. She decided to teach Max how to cook at least a few simple things.

“Okay let’s start with the basics,” she stated. “This is a knife. Notice the sharp blade. I know shiny things attract you but…”

“Liz.”

Liz laughed at his frustrated look. “Okay. So we’re going to make a simple pizza.”

He smiled. “That’s sounds easy enough.”

“From scratch,” she added. His smile dropped and Liz laughed as she began showing him where to start and what to do.

As Max tried to made the dough, Liz prepared the toppings, slicing up the bacon, ham and pepperoni. Max looked miserable, having screwed up the dough. But before long, he looked like he was having fun and Liz smiled to herself.

“All finished,” he said as he wrapped his arms around her from behind, startling her. She yelped as the knife slipped across her hand.

“What? Do you burn something?”

“No,” she moaned when she held up her bloodied hand.

His eyes widened when he spotted the gash across her palm and he quickly reached for a towel to stop the bleeding.

He picked her up and placed her in the chair at the table before he kneeled in front of her. “Let me see,” he said. Liz removed the towel and let Max examine her wound. “It doesn’t look deep.”

“Hey, who’s the future nurse here?” she teased.

“Well right now you’re the patient. So hush and let me take care of you,” he retorted.

Liz let him tend to her wound. Once he’d bandaged her hand up, he carried her into the living room.

“Max, what are you doing? I’m not crippled,” she said as he placed her on the couch.

“Just relax and let me handle dinner.” Liz glanced at the sticky mess that used to be their kitchen and the soggy blob Max had tried to pass of as pizza dough.

“Max, I don’t think you should be allowed in the kitchen ever again,” she quipped.

“Wait and see. I’ll make you the best pizza you’ve ever had,” he declared. He discreetly picked up the phone as he headed back into the kitchen, but Liz saw him anyway. “I guarantee this pizza will be done in thirty minutes or less,” he called from the kitchen.

Some time later, there was a knock at the door and Max quickly rushed to it, telling her not to pay him or what he was doing any mind.

He returned into the living room a few moments later with a few slices of ham and bacon pizza for her and pepperoni for him. Liz couldn’t help but laugh at how pitiful he was when it came to cooking.

“I am the world’s best pizza maker,” he gloated as they polished off his fifth slice.

“Yeah. You’re so good, you even managed to make the box to go with it,” she laughed as she gestured to the half empty pizza box.

“Okay so I need a few more lessons.”

She leaned against the arm of the couch and draped her legs across his lap. “Oh you need more than a few,” she giggled.

Max shifted to lean against her, his head resting beneath her chin.

“You’re enjoying the fact that I suck at cooking aren’t you?”

“Yes,” she replied quickly. Max chuckled as he gently took her damaged hand in his.

“Does your hand still hurt?”

“A little. Thanks for taking care of me.”

“No problem.” He lifted his head and smiled down at her. His eyes darted from hers to her lips before trailing down to their clasped hands. “I need to finish cleaning the mess I made.”

“Need help?”

He smiled softly. “No. You’re injured,” he chuckled.

Liz laughed and not being one to pass up the chance to get out of cleaning, she relented.

She started to reply, but instead, she watched him as he lifted her hand to his lips and pressed a soft kiss against her skin. He let go, moving his hand to cup her cheek just before he leaned in and kissed her.

His lips were soft to the touch and it didn’t take her long to melt into his embrace and respond. He kissed her gently and sensually, caressing her lips and causing her head to spin and her heart to flutter. It was a simple kiss but it felt like so much more and she was stunned that Max, her best friend, could make her feel this way.

He pulled away and she slowly let her eyes flutter open. With the only thought of Max’s lips against hers, she saw that his eyes looked as glossy as she knew hers did.

He leaned in once more and she gladly let him, this time bringing her arms around his neck to pull him closer.

As the kiss deepened so did the fluttering in her chest. And she went without realizing that she was falling hard and there was no way to stop it.

TBC………

I'll be back Wednesday. :wink:
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Wed Mar 23, 2005 5:11 pm

<center>Chapter 9</center>

His arms wrapped tightly around her waist and she tilted her head to deepen the kiss. She had no idea how long it had been since his lips first touched hers, but she didn’t care.

Liz moaned at the feel of his tongue brushing against her lips. She eagerly invited him in, but he pulled away before her tongue could meet hers.

“Max…”

He backed away from her as if he’d just been burned. “I-I’m sorry. I didn’t mean… I’m sorry.” He rushed into his room, leaving her panting and dazed.

“Liz, what did you do?”

Liz stared at her friend as she played with the hem of her shirt. Liz had fled the apartment as soon as Max had retreated into his room and now she was trying to explain to Maria what happened. “I… he kissed me. We kissed… twice. And then he ran off into his room.”

Liz refused to recognize how good kissing him felt. She denied the tingling feeling she still felt on her lips where he’d kissed her not a half hour ago, along with the slight jump of her heart and the excitement she felt when she thought of him.

“You lasted one week. Longer than I expected,” Maria commented.

“Maria this is serious. I mean… how is this going to affect our friendship?” she queried to herself. “I don’t know how it happened,” she uttered. “One minute we’re eating pizza, laughing about how he sucks at cooking and then the next…”

“Okay, look Liz. Maybe you’re making a big deal out of nothing. Just talk to Max. So far, you two have been pretty honest with each other. Don’t stop that now.”

“It’s going to be weird now. I mean, it can’t just go back to the ways things were can it? I don’t want to lose him as a friend Maria.”

“Liz.” Maria moved to embrace her friend. “That’s not going to happen. You guys just kissed right?” Liz nodded. “Well then you two will work it out. Just talk to him Lizzie. I’m sure you’re worried over nothing.”

“Yeah but a kiss can change everything. I felt things Maria; things that I’ve never felt once when I was with Erick or anyone else. Maria this is bad.”

“Liz, the only thing I can tell you is talk to him. Be honest. It might be hard, but it’ll work out in the end.”
*************

Liz was relieved to find that Max wasn’t home yet when she returned from her classes. Tossing her backpack aside, she collapsed onto the couch.

Max was asleep by the time Liz returned from Maria’s last night and they missed each other in the morning because he had an early class. She had no idea what she was supposed to say to him and she figured she had before he returned home to figure it out.

Max entered the living at that moment, throwing her a quick glance before tossing his backpack aside just as she did and silently sat beside her on the couch.

He turned to her, his eyes shining and silently conveying his apology. “Hey,” he said quietly, his tone barely above a whisper.

“Hi.”

He smiled. “I’m sorry.”

“Me too.”

“We need to talk.”

“Yeah. I just don’t know what to say,” she admitted. “I mean, I’m confused about this whole thing.”

“Confused? About how you feel or…”

She shrugged her shoulders, not really having any idea how to talk to him about this. Be honest, she reminded herself.

She opened her mouth to speak, but nothing came out. She could tell him anything, he was her best friend. But the risk of being hurt was too high and she wasn’t about to go through that again.

“I mean. It’s just weird. The thought of you and me together. We’re best friends and that’s it. I know we can’t pursue anything between us. That’s completely out of the question,” she said between nervous giggles.

He dropped his gaze to his hands resting in his lap and smiled slightly. “Yeah. I guess so.”

“I mean, what would that be like? You and me actually going on dates with each other… it’s kind of silly when you really think about it.” She saw Max slightly nodding his head, looking anywhere but her. She assumed that this was just as nerve-wracking for him as it was for her.

“So we’ll just rule this as an accident,” she declared. “An innocent mistake.”

“Yeah. A mistake,” he mumbled. “I just fell and your lips broke my fall,” he quipped lamely. “So, I um… I have to study, so I’ll just be in my room if you need me,” he said while he got to his feet, grabbed his backpack and started towards the hall.

“Have fun,” she called.

He swiveled around, smiled and continued on his way.
***********

Over the next couple of weeks, the awkwardness between Max and Liz didn’t dissipate. There were no more sleepovers. She hadn’t slept in his arms in over a month and she’d be lying if she said she didn’t miss him rubbing her back until she fell asleep, or listening to him complain that her feet were cold, but letting her rest them against him for warmth anyway.

While Max brought home women, Liz had gone out on a few dates, trying desperately to forget the feelings she felt when Max kissed her and the jealousy she felt when he brought home another woman.

Most of her dates were a jackasses. They were only interested in sleeping with her and she almost gave up hope until she met Brian a few weeks ago. They’d met while Liz was out with Alex for lunch and hit it off, though he did tend to bore her once in awhile. But he was attractive, nice and treated her with respect. That was what she needed right now.

“Brian, we’re supposed to be watching this movie,” she giggled. He was currently kissing his way down her neck, tickling her sensitive skin.

“I have better things to be doing than watching that,” he replied. Liz pulled away, leaving him pouting, just as he nipped at her collarbone.

“Behave yourself,” she warned. “Watch the movie.” He pouted, but obeyed. Liz smiled as he turned his brown eyes toward the T.V. and ran a hand through his black hair. He threw an arm around her shoulders and she leaned against him, resting her head on his shoulder.

Liz glanced at her watch. Max was due home from work two hours ago. He and Brian had met already and Max seemed frustratingly supportive of her and Brian’s relationship. She didn’t know how she thought he would react or how she wanted him too, but she was disappointed nonetheless.

Jut as she got comfortable in Brian’s embrace, there was a loud pounding at the door and she moved to answer it. But Brian stopped her before she could get far enough away.

“I’ll get it babe,” he said. Liz frowned and watched him move towards the door.

He stepped aside, revealing Michael who was almost dragging a half conscious Max into the apartment.

“Michael,” Liz shrieked as she rushed to his side. “What happened?”

“Long story,” he grunted and gestured for Liz to lead him to Max’s room. Liz slid under Max’s other arm and helped Michael carry him into his room. She moved away and turned down the sheets and Michael laid him down. Max passed out as soon as he hit the pillow.

“What happened to him?” she questioned again when she looked at his face and the spots of blood on his shirt. She gently ran her fingers over the cuts and bruises marring his features.

“Let’s undress him first,” Michael suggested.

Liz nodded. “Lift him up,” Liz said.

“Uh Liz,” Brian started. Liz pivoted to face him. She’d forgotten he was there and wasn’t aware that he had followed them into Max’s room. “Maybe you should let Michael do this.”

“Why? It’s not like I haven’t seen him in his underwear before,” she returned with a shrug of her shoulders. Michael lifted Max up while Liz pulled off his shirt. She pulled off his shoes next as Michael worked on the button to his jeans.

“I so did not plan on being this close to Maxwell’s private business,” he muttered. “Liz…”

Liz rolled her eyes, pushed Michael’s hands out of the way and unzipped Max’s jeans and pulled them down his legs, revealing his black boxers. She tended to his cuts before tucking him in.

They left Max to rest and headed back into the living room. “Michael will you tell me what happened now?”

“Liz I’m going to head home,” Brian interrupted. Liz nodded, glanced at him as he leaned in to peck her lips and then turned her full attention back to Michael.

“New friend,” Michael commented once Brian was gone.

“Never mind that,” she said. “Tell me what happened to him.”

“Okay. Well after Max got off work, he wasn’t ready to come home so we went to this new bar a couple of blocks away. Max got piss drunk and this guy…I’m guessing you with out on a date with him…”

Liz frowned. “What was his name?”

“Tom?.... Bob?...”

“Rob?”

“Yeah. He was sitting next to us and I guess Max recognized him and he mentioned you. Rob started talking shit about you and before I knew it, they were on the floor and Max was on top of the guy. And let me tell you, that ain’t Maxwell’s blood on his shirt.”

Liz inwardly smiled, thrilled that Max would stick up for her. And what made it even better was that Rob was a complete asshole to her, standing her up on their second date just because she wouldn’t sleep with him on the first. He got what he deserved.

“Anyway, I need to get home to Maria before she finds out I’m out this late.” Liz raised a questioning eyebrow and Michael rolled his eyes. “Okay so I’m whipped. There ain’t nothing wrong with that. I’ll do anything to get something at night.”

Liz scrunched her face in disgust. “Eww. I really didn’t need to hear that.”

Michael laughed and headed for the door. “See you later Liz.”

Fighting the urge to climb into Max’s bed with him, Liz went into her own room and was soon asleep.
*******

Liz lifted her head off her pillow as Max poked his head in the door. “Can I come in?”

Liz smiled and pulled back the sheets, inviting him to join her. “I heard you had a crazy night last night,” she said as he slid under the sheets and pressed his cold nose against her neck. “What’d Rob say?”

Max shrugged. “Don’t know. I was completely wasted. I thought he looked familiar when I first went in there and then all I remember was him saying Liz, slut and bitch and I went off on his sorry ass.”

“I’m glad I have you around to defend my honor,” she teased.

“No one talks about my girl and gets away with it. Regardless if I’m half conscious or not,” he quipped.

Liz chuckled and laid her cheek against his forehead as she ran her fingers though his dark hair. “Hungover?”

“Very. Oh, and I’d advise you to stay out of the bathroom for awhile. I sort of puked in the bathroom last night, but I don’t remember where.”

“Max…”

“I’ll clean it up later after my head stops spinning,” he sighed.

“Want some aspirin?”

He shook his head as he tightened his arm around her waist. “Just be my pillow right now and turn down the sun,” he said as he squinted against the sun shining in through the window. Liz got up and closed the blinds before sliding back in bed.

“Thank you.”

“Hey, we had a deal remember? You did the same for me when I was drunk.”

“Oh yeah,” he chuckled. “You weren’t there when I flashed everyone the street.”

“You did not,” she giggled. “Max, I don’t appreciate you making fun of me in my intoxicated state.”

“Well too bad cause that’s going to stay with you for the rest of your life. I’m never letting you forget that one,” he laughed.

Liz rolled her eyes, but laughed anyway.

Max lifted his head and frowned down at her. “Why do you smell like a man?”

Liz laughed at his odd question. “Cause I’m wearing your shirt.”

“Oh.” He dropped his head onto her shoulder once more. “I’ve been looking for this shirt. I want it back in my closet by the end of the day.”

“I’ll let you have one of my shirts if I can keep this one.”

“How about one of your bras instead.” She felt him smiling against her.

“What are you going to do with my bra?”

“Wear it to bed of course,” he said seriously.

“I dare you,” she challenged.

“Never mind. I heard they’re uncomfortable anyway. I like my breaticles free to bounce around as they please. You should join me Liz. Free yourself!”

“Nice try,” she laughed.

“Worth a shot,” he sighed. He closed his eyes and pulled the sheets up to his chin as she rubbed his back.

“You okay?”

“I’m nauseous, tired and wishing the T.V. was in here. Other than that, I’m fine.”

“You’re really paying for last night aren’t you?”

“Mmm. Liz, stop rubbing my back. You’re putting me to sleep,” he mumbled as he swatted at her hand.

“You do the same thing to me,” she protested.

“That’s just to shut you up so I can have my way with you while you’re sleeping,” he teased with a soft smile.

“How do you know I’m not trying to do the same thing?” she retorted.

“In that case, you can do that while I’m awake Doll.”

She laughed and continued to rub his back.

He fell silent and she figured he’d drifted off, but suddenly stirred against her, lifting his head to look adoringly at her. “I missed you Liz,” he said.

She smiled brightly, knowing exactly what he meant and brushed back his bangs. “I missed you too Max.”

He smiled and returned to his original position. Soon he was snoring quietly, his heavy weight lying partially on top of her. It had been awhile since they talked like this; about nothing, but everything in general. It made her smile. The awkwardness felt like it was finally gone and she had her best friend back.

TBC……

Be back Sunday.
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Be at Peace MJ

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sweetbrowneyes
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Post by sweetbrowneyes » Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:59 am

Hey guys. Thanks for the feedback. I hope you enjoy!

<center>Chapter 10</center>

“Hey Liz,” Maria greeted her. Liz smiled and stepped past her into the apartment.

“You got any medicine. Tylenol, Aleve…”

“What for? Max?”

Liz nodded as she followed Maria in to the kitchen. “I told the idiot that it’s not summer anymore and you have to wear a coat when you go outside. As usual my words of wisdom don’t mean a thing and now he’s got a cold and we’re all out of medicine.”

“And so you’ve come to take ours that we’ve spent our hard earned money on,” Maria teased as she reached in the top cabinet and pulled out a bottle of Tylenol. “Daytime or nighttime?”

“Nighttime. It’ll knock him out and I won’t have to hear him complaining that his pillows aren’t fluffy enough or that the color of his bed spread hurt his eyes and I should change it for him. He even sent me out to rent Nightmare Before Christmas and Shrek 2....”

“Oh you love it Nurse Liz. You love taking care of him,” Maria said with a knowing smile.

“Only because I know he’d do the same for me,” she said with a soft smile. She caught Maria rolling her eyes, but Liz ignored her. “Oh. You got any soup too?” Maria sighed in mock exasperation. “What? Why buy what you can get from a friend for free.”

“That is so very true.” Maria pulled out a plastic bag and bagged several cans of chicken noodle soup and the Tylenol. “Get out of here and go take care of Max. Tell him I’ll call and bug him later. And give him a kiss… on the lips… with tongue… for me.”

“Maria.”

“What? Say it’s from me.” Liz rolled her eyes, grabbed the bag and headed for the door.
********

Liz poured the steaming soup into two bowls and headed into the living room. She smiled when she saw Max. He looked like a little boy, huddled under a blanket on one side of the couch, his nose was red from blowing it countless times and his face was flushed while he excitedly watched the Nightmare Before Christmas.

“Thank you,” he said when she handed him the soup. Liz smiled, put on her mask she got from the hospital and joined him on the couch. “Liz, why are you wearing that silly thing?”

“Because I don’t want you sharing your germs with me.”

“Are you really going to wear that all day?”

“Yeah. As long as I’m around you.”

“But Liz, I can’t see that beautiful face of yours with that on,” he whined.

Liz giggled. “You know your come on’s don’t really sound as good with your nose all congested like that,” she laughed.

He sneezed, spilling the majority of his soup in his lap. “Shit. I hate this,” he pouted.

“See what happens when you don’t listen to me? All this could’ve been avoided…”

“Okay, okay. I get it, oh wise one. Guide me with your brilliance.”

“Now was that so hard,” she giggled. He flicked a noodle that had fallen onto the blanket at her before he got up to put the blanket in the hamper and then get a dry one out of the hall closet.

“Before you sit down, come here,” she said. She grabbed his hand and pulled him into the kitchen.

“Is that flavored?” he asked as he watched her pour the Tylenol into a spoon.

“I don’t think so.” She shoved it into his mouth before he could complain and she watched in amusement as he scrunched his face up in disgust.

“Liz…” she shoved the second dose in his mouth then and watched as he grabbed at his throat as if he were chocking.

“Oh quit being so dramatic,” she laughed.

“That shit is nasty.”

“Stop being such a baby.” He pouted and she gave him the rest of her soup when they returned to the living room.

“Thanks for keeping me company Liz. You didn’t have to do this,” he said as he stretched out on the couch and placed his head in her lap.

“You’d do the same for me. Besides, I had nothing else to do.”

“You didn’t have a date with whatyamacallit?”

Liz rolled her eyes, knowing Max knew his name, but just didn’t want to say it. “His name’s Brian and I think he’s angry at me.”

He rolled over on his back and reached up to poke at her mask. “What for?”

Liz shrugged as she swatted his hand away from her face. “I think he’s jealous of you and me. We’ve been hanging out a lot lately and I think he feels excluded.”

“What?” Max shrieked. “He’s over here almost all the time. What does he want? A fucking three way? Cause I sure as hell ain’t up to that. That’s not my style, especially not with another dude!”

Liz laughed and as she slapped his arm. “Max, shut up! That’s not what I meant. I guess he doesn’t like how close you and I are. He got upset when I told him that I couldn’t go to the movies with him, and I was staying home with you.”

“Liz you could’ve went with him. I’m fine here.”

“Yeah but, I didn’t feel like going out. I invited him over, but he hung up before I could finish my sentence.”

Max picked up her hand that was resting on his stomach and played with her fingers. “Well let’s look at this as a positive,” he started. “This would the perfect time to dump him.”

“What? Why?”

Max rolled his eyes. “Liz, the guy is boring. He spent a half hour talking about the rain forest when I first met him.”

“He did not!” Liz exclaimed. “He’s an environmentalist. He’s really passionate about what he does.”

“Which is…”

Liz paused a beat, not really sure what the answer was. He told her specifically that he was in charge of something, but for the life of her she couldn’t remember.

“What he does doesn’t matter right now,” Liz returned.

Max was silent as he pressed his palm against hers and then watched as his fingers intertwined with hers. “He’s not your type,” he countered.

Liz sighed, wondering if he’d ever quit. “Okay, well then what’s my type?”

“Well, I’m… I don’t know, but I know it’s not him.”

Liz frowned. “What happened? You were so supportive of us in the beginning.”

“Well I changed my mind. I don’t like him.”

“Why?”

Again, he was silent before he answered. “His head is too big for starters and the way he walks… he walks like a stalker,” he stated seriously.

“What?” she said, choking back a spurt of laughter. “How do you figure that?”

“I don’t know… he just does. I’d watch myself if I were you Liz. What if he’s like one of those sexual predators?” His eyes went wide and Liz couldn’t hold back her laughter any longer. “Liz, I don’t want you around him.”

“I think that medicine is making you a little loopy.”

He smiled and poked her nose through her mask. “He’s not good enough for you and I’m perfectly coherent and sane thank you very much.”

“Coherent yeah, but sane… I wouldn’t bet on that,” she teased. Max gave her a funny look before he rolled on his side, placing his warm hand on her knee.

“Can you put Shrek in please?” He grinned innocently up at her and he looked so adorable she had no choice but to do as he asked.

“I bet you were so cute as a kid,” she said as she loaded the DVD. “I can just see you and those big ears at seven,” she laughed.

“I looked so good. I was a knockout,” he responded through a yawn. “I can see you at seven too. Little cutie pie running around in Roswell,” he chuckled.

“You think the seven year old versions of us would be as good of friends as we are today if we knew each other?” she asked.

He shrugged as rolled on his back he closed his eyes. “I don’t know. I didn’t like girls back then. I was in a boy’s only club still and didn’t appreciate the beauty women had yet.”

“That’s hard to believe you not even liking girls,” she teased.

“I bet a certain chocolate haired beauty from Roswell would’ve changed my mind though.”

Liz’s eyes went wide in surprise as she stared at him. “You think so?”

“Mhmm. I would’ve fallen head over heels in love with you,” he sighed. “The seven year old version of me, I mean.”

He turned over and pressed his face in her stomach.

“And what about now? How does the present version feel?” She bit her lip in anticipation for his response, but it never came. She shook his shoulder and his eyes fluttered open, but drifted shut once more.

“Max?”

“Mm?”

Just my luck, she thought. Liz sighed in defeat, covered him with the blanket and let him rest.
*********

Liz eased from underneath Max and placed a pillow beneath his head before she went to answer the door.

“Hey Brian,” she greeted him with a soft smile. His head is a little oversized, she thought to herself.

“Hey, um…. we need to talk,” he started.

Liz nodded in agreement and gestured for him to come in. She pulled him into the kitchen so they wouldn’t disturb Max.

“How is he? Max I mean?”

She glanced over to the couch where he was sleeping peacefully. “Oh… um he’s got a fever and sore throat… it’s just a cold though. He’ll be fine in a couple of days.”

There a short awkward silence before he spoke up. “So I was thinking that maybe we shouldn’t see each other anymore.”

Liz perked up at that. “You were?”

“I mean, you’re a great girl Liz and any guy would kill to be with you, but we’re just too different people.”

“I agree.”

“You do?” He looked surprised, but let her continue.

“Yeah. I was thinking the same thing. I like you, but I don’t think you and I are going to work out.”

He nodded and dropped his gaze to his shoes. “So I guess this is it, huh?”

“Yeah,” she said softly, happy that this was ending so smoothly. “Um… it was nice… you know?” she said awkwardly. She led him to the door.

“Yeah. Um… bye Liz.”

“Bye Brian.” He leaned in and kissed her cheek, before turning and walking down the hall.
**********

Liz walked out of the hospital, happy to finally be headed home after a long day of work. She had the weekend off with no papers to write and she planned to relax and be lazy as much as she could.

“Liz!!”

Liz whirled around to see Kyle Evans jogging towards her, through the crowd on the busy street. “Kyle! What are you doing here?” she exclaimed as he pulled her into a warm hug. She had heard from Max that Kyle was doing quite well down in Florida.

“I’m back on business,” he said as he gave her the once over. “You look good Parker. I take it my brother hasn’t gotten a clue and snatched you up yet.”

Liz blushed and decided a change of subjects was in need. “So, how long are you in town?”

“I leave tomorrow evening,” he said as the two began to walk down the street.

“Does Max know you’re here?”

“Yeah, I just came from the apartment. So what are you up to tonight?” he asked, turning towards her, his hand brushing against her arm.

“Oh… um, nothing. I’m just going to lie around the apartment.” They stopped at an intersection and waited for the light to turn.

“Well how about coming out with me instead?” Liz stopped and gaped at Kyle as if he’d just said he was an alien.

“What?”

“I was thinking of going to dinner and then a play. How about you join me?” he reiterated, flashing a charming smile.

Liz returned his smile and noticed for the first time that, unlike Max, Kyle had deep blue eyes that seemed to draw her in.

“What do you say Liz?”

“Um… yeah… yeah I’d really like that,” she answered with a bright smile.

“Great. How about I come by around seven?”

“Sounds great.”

“Great… Well I have to go back the other way,” he said as he gestured in the direction they just came from. “So I’ll see you tonight.”

“Yeah.” He leaned in and kissed her cheek. “Bye Kyle.” He waved before turning and disappearing through the crowd.
********

Liz checked herself in the mirror once more to make sure every hair was in place. She wore a black silk chiffon dress with a v-neck cut in the front and the back, showing off just enough skin. Satisfied, she grabbed her black heels and headed into the living room. Just as she settled on the couch, the door opened and Max appeared with a giggling blonde on his arm.

“Hey Doll,” he greeted her. “Michele, this is Liz. Liz, Michele.” Max gave her the once over before pointing in the direction of his room. Liz nodded in understanding and she tried to ignore the girl’s giggling as they made their way down the hall.

Liz began to strap on her shoes when Max reappeared in the living room.

“Finished already,” she deadpanned. “I’m impressed. You actually remembered her name.”

He ignored her and gestured to her outfit. “Where are you going?”

“I’m going out with Kyle,” she answered as she finished strapping on her shoes.

“Kyle?” Max folded his arms across his chest and raised his eyebrows in question. “How’d you know he was in town?”

“Oh, we just bumped into each other,” she said, slightly intrigued by the many emotions flashing in his eyes. She wondered what he was thinking. “Don’t you have a guest you need to be entertaining?”

He waved it off as he followed her into her room. “Liz, you can’t go out with Kyle. He’s… he’s Kyle!! I mean… the guy used to give me wedges when I was a kid.”

“And I am so very sorry about that Max, but I’m a grown woman and I’m pretty sure I can do whatever I please. Besides, we’re just going to dinner and a play.”

She turned from him, but she could feel his eyes boring into her back. She grabbed her purse and brushed passed him.

“Why are you going out with Kyle?” he asked as he followed her out into the living room.

“Why is it any of your business?” she snapped. She sighed and immediately regretted snapping at him. “Look Max, we’re just hanging out okay?”

He shoved his hands into his pockets and rocked on his heels. She had never seen him do that before. “So this is just like a hanging out thing, right? It’s not a date?”

Getting really irritated, she whirled around to face him. “Max, why do you care? I don’t question you about your intensions with all your dates.”

“Well maybe you should,” he declared.

She gawked at him, trying to figure out what he meant. And then, she asked him the question she’d wanted an answer to since the day she found out he slept with so many women. “Okay then. Question. Why is that you feel you have to be with so many women? How can you give yourself up to random people like that?”

“Liz, I already told you, I just like to have fun,” he said.

“Why can’t you find just one woman and then have fun with her?”

He shrugged. “I don’t believe that I could ever find the right woman to be with. I don’t know if there’s anyone out there for me to love unconditionally that would love me just the same.”

“So you sleep with random girls?”

“It beats being alone.”

Liz stood in shock, unaware that Max felt that way. She just assumed that maybe having one woman wasn’t enough for him. But to find out that he thought that there wasn’t anyone he could be with, changed the way she looked at him.

“Max!! Hurry up baby!” Michele called from the bedroom, breaking the staring contest between them.

There was a knock at the door and Liz grabbed her coat, knowing it was Kyle. “Look, I have to go.”

Max reached for her arm and stopped her advance to the door. “No. Wait Liz.” Liz turned to face him, waiting for him to continue. “Liz I…I…”

Her pulse was racing. Her heart was pounding in her chest. He leaned in closer, his eyes locked on hers. She never wanted anyone to kiss her more than she did now.

But when he stepped back, his eyes darting across the room, looking at anything but her, her hope plummeted. “I… I want you to have a good time.”

Liz nodded, forcing a small smile on her lips. “I’ll see you later.”

With that, she turned and greeted Kyle, leaving Max behind.

TBC…………

See you Wednesday :wink:
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Be at Peace MJ

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