Always Tomorrow (CC, Mature) - A Reunion's Endgame - Chapter 21 - 07/09/2020

This is the place to post all your General Roswell fanfiction. Any Canon fics, which pick up directly from any episode of the show and that focus on Max/Liz, Michael/Maria, Isabel/Alex or Isabel/Jesse, Kyle/Tess, or all the couples together! Rule of Thumb: If Max healed Liz in the Crashdown in September 1999, then your fic belongs here. If it picks up from the show in any way, it belongs here.

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RoswellFan68
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Re: Always Tomorrow (CC, Mature) - A Reunion's Endgame - Chapter 10 - 06/08/2020

Post by RoswellFan68 » Tue Jun 09, 2020 12:47 pm

I glad Alex was with Elizabeth. I wish he could have helped more before she got into so much trouble.

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Parker1947
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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 11 - 06/11/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Thu Jun 11, 2020 12:52 pm

“The computer is password protected, so it’s going to be needed to hacked since we don’t know the password” Grace was saying as they tried not to dwell on what her friend had revealed, and they got back to business as revealed to her father and Elizabeth what she and Jake had managed to find when they had gotten into Nicholas’s apartment after court, and that they were able to get into his safe and was able to take relevant material. Max could not help but react with relief yet on the other hand Elizabeth could not help but look away at the knowledge her brother would have seen the apartment, and her room, especially.

Jake could tell what his sister was thinking “Stop it,” he said softly. “I don’t think less of you sis; I just wish we had known and could have gotten you out of there a lot sooner than we did…” he sighed. “To know what you had to have gone through in that apartment.”

Elizabeth could not help but feel weary on whether to truly trust her brother’s kind words so Max stepped into the conversation, “What did you find?” Max asked as he saw the laptop, and then the files that his daughter had pulled out of her bag.

“As I said, we’ll need someone who knows a thing about hacking into a computer to get anything off it” Grace said as she exchanged a look with her husband, who smiled and nodded while Maria winced because she knew who was going to named and she wasn’t in the mood for it.

“What?” Elizabeth asked as she saw the exchanges of looks and knew something was up.

“It’s just I know someone who knows how to access the inaccessible” as Grace could not help but smile while Jake could only look amused by her mother’s discomfort at the approaching discussion. “And I know for a fact, she would love to do it…”

“Whom?” Elizabeth asked as she looked between Grace and her brother, as she was confused as to who Grace could be talking about that would get her mother to react in the way she did which told her all she needed to know that she was out of the loop and she hated that feeling. The knowledge the went on with life without her…

“Sue…” Grace smiled although Jake had someone else in his mind but knew that would be a no go with his mother, and therefore the easiest the person to use for this task was Sue, although he figured while his mother might prefer the other candidate, by a tiny fraction, but there was no way his mother would go for it, so it was perfect for Sue…

“Really?” Elizabeth asked. “Sue,” she murmured as awareness struck. “Wait, do you mean Sue as in Sue Adams?” she wondered of her long-lost friend and the third musketeer to her team with Grace back when life was simpler back in high school as she longed for those days.

“Yup,” Grace nodded with great pleasure. “She’s in medical school with me, but wants to eventually focus on forensics science and as a result she knows a thing or two about computers…”

“How did that come about?” Elizabeth asked shocked, because she did not think her friend was that into science when they were school or computers for that matter as she remembered Sue not knowing what she would do once they graduated. “I remember how she hated science, and cursed the subject every semester, and she hated blood”

“You inspired her…” Jake muttered as he did not want to dwell on the past.

“How did I do that?” Elizabeth asked.

“When you disappeared back in high school, she became fascinated with trying to solve the unexplainable and the more she got into it, the more she wanted it to be her career. She wants to help solve crimes; you know blood evidence and other aspects of evidence,” Grace murmured. “She’s still not crazy about blood, but if it gets her answers than she’s all for it.”

“Wow,” Elizabeth asked. “But why would she hack a computer, now…”

“She would do it for you, but mostly for Colin” Grace cracked as Maria just walked away and paced the room. Max nodded his encouragement to his friend because he was aware that talk about Colin and Sue was awkward for his friends because neither Michael and Maria were very fond of the relationship, but it was Maria who had the most issues because she didn’t see how it would be good for her son to fall for someone who was older, after all the difficulty that Jake had with Grace in the beginning, although Max would mention that his daughter was a very different from Colin because the chaos in the family had mostly left the other kids alone, except that the impact of what had happened to Elizabeth had indeed enveloped everyone to some degree or another. No one could truly escape the carnage whether they got a happy ending in the end or not.

“Wait, what’s going on?” Elizabeth asked, suddenly perked up on the prospect of concentrating on something other than how miserable her own life had gone up to this point.

“Sue and Colin are dating” Grace revealed.

“Excuse me,” Elizabeth asked. “How is that possible. Colin? Our brother Colin…” she whispered as she if she had just heard something that did not compute, and it did not “Wait, isn’t she like our age? Colin is what?”

“19” Maria muttered.

“20, next week” Jake reminded her mother as he was aware of his mother’s discomfort on the topic. “Although they didn’t start up until after he was 18, and in this case, 19.”

“It doesn’t matter when it started because it is still yet another one of my children with an age inappropriate relationship and this one would be a lot worse than you and Grace could ever have been” Maria muttered. “Once they get a hold of it, well, the media will be all over our family once again when they surely pick it up…”

“It’s been only six months or so” Grace confirmed to Elizabeth. “Both are at Las Cruces, and they met through school at a party although they were friendly beforehand, but nothing started up until last fall when they met on campus.”

“Cool…” Elizabeth muttered at the thought.

“No, it’s not cool,” Maria muttered as she stood annoyed by one of her children’s chosen relationships. “But I can’t tell your brother anything these days…”

“What is with my friends and my brothers…” Elizabeth could not help but burst out laughing. “Is Liam dating someone we know?”
“What can I say, when you have brothers, they tend to attract” Grace could not help but smile as she leaned in for a kiss with her husband who could smile. “About Liam, well, he is single as far as I know, right Jake?” she asked of her husband who nodded.

“Yeah Liam is single,” Jake murmured. “But he’s dating…”

“Back to our previous discussion, Sue. She would love to help us out so I can show her to the computer “Grace murmured as she thought of the computer and frowned at her friend. “Is there any chance you know what would be on it?”

Elizabeth laughter faded. “No, it could be anything. I never saw him with it, but he was a mystery a lot of the time” she sighed as she knew whatever was on it couldn’t be that good, and she didn’t want to know even if it might set her free. “When I had my freedom, I tended to stay away from anything to do with him…”

“Okay, I’ll set up a meeting with Sue, and let you know if anything comes from it” Grace nodded.

“The file?” Max asked as he saw the other files. “How bad is it?”

“Bad,” Jake confirmed. “If we have the chance, we better show it to Dad and Aunt Isabel… Sis, I can see why you would do what you do once I got a chance to look at the file, but you should have come to us”

“I was too screwed up,” Elizabeth said. “From my viewpoint. He could have brought everyone down. Even Grandpa for being our ally and helping us. So, I felt like I could only do one thing, and that was to protect the family. I knew I was too weak to stay away from the drugs he was tempting me with. In those days, I was feeling too much pain and the memories were too fresh… as they were always fresh and they weren’t going away so I figured I was protecting you guys and Emily by agreeing to his threats, and by staying away and therefore it became my bargain with myself. My way of making sure at least something stayed within my control.”

“We would have helped you…” Maria said quietly. “We could have fought him.”

“I couldn’t see that,” Elizabeth said. “Not then…” she said honestly as she hated how the darkness had ruled much of her existence these last seven years, and she wanted to concentrate on something that brought happiness and not dread. “So, tell me more about Colin and Sue?”


*

Las Cruces – Apartment


“Yeah, I can meet for breakfast. Can you come here?” asked the person was sitting up in bed and looking at the clock. “No, I understand, I can come there… How about 10, you know the drive” she smiled. “Sure, I would love it. Say hello to Jake for me,” she laughed. “I will” she smiled as she hung up, and watched her boyfriend come out of the bathroom, naked.

“We’re busted” Sue smiled.

“I know, since Liam will have made it home, so they know I am not with him” Colin smiled as he leaned down onto the bed and kissed his girlfriend and they embraced “But I do have to get dressed, and get going otherwise they will have reason to call for my head”

“I know,” Sue smiled as they fell back against the bed again. “You do need to get home, and before long, the media is going to notice…”

“No, they won’t” Colin smiled as he knew that the media wouldn’t care about him and Sue, as they only had eyes at the real meat of the story, which was his sister and his parents because of mother previous life as a writer. “They don’t care about us…”

“Yes, they do,” Sue said kissing him, “With your sister back, you are now part of the larger story, and it’s going to get more confusing because you haven’t told your parents, right?”

“No, have you told your parents? Or Grace?” Colin asked softly.

“No,” Sue shook her head as she knew she was going to get acceptance from Grace, despite the shock of her news and her parents were another story but they weren’t as much as a worry to her as Colin’s parents. “But your parents’ matter to me Colin. They hate me…”

“They don’t hate you,” Colin assured his girlfriend. “They only hate the fact we’re dating…” he smiled as they kissed. “They like you as an individual” he laughed. “With everything going on these days and especially now with Elizabeth back, I can’t very well tell them…”

“That is not much better,” Sue said as she watched as Colin pulled on his pants and shirt, and she picked up her own clothes and started to get ready. “They think I am too old for you… which is why you’re really hesitating. You haven’t changed your mind, have you?”

“I was 19 when we hooked up,” Colin reminded Sue. “No, I haven’t changed my mind and at the end of the day, they want me happy, and I am happy with you…”

“Tell me that when you tell them,” Sue smiled as she got up from the bed. “Speaking of me, I am meeting Grace for breakfast in Roswell. She has something about your sister’s case she wants me to help with…”

“Oh,” Colin sighed as he thought of his sister and knew she had to get home and deal with the latest crisis in his family. “I wish you could come back with me…”

“I wish I could also, but that is not what we need right now,” Sue sighed. “But you do need to get home, and therefore I completely understand why you can’t stay tonight, so call me, okay, so I know you got there safely, as leaned for a kiss before reaching for his shirt and pants.

Colin nodded “Maybe we can meet somewhere tomorrow after your breakfast,” Colin asked as he finished getting dressed.

“Call me,” Sue nodded as she walked Colin to the door and watched him leave and knew they were ticking time clock before the truth was out as tried to concentrate on studying for her upcoming exam, as she made plans to swing by the hospital and see Elizabeth after her breakfast with Grace.


*

Isabel was watching Drew sleep while checking in on Mick who was completely asleep and now Drew was, and Michael was still blowing of some steam in the garage and hadn’t come back into the house so she decided to stick despite Liam now being home to keep an eye on his younger siblings, and nephews.

Coming downstairs she saw the front door open and Maria pop in, and Isabel was instantly relieved to see her friend. “Finally, we were getting worried, and starting to think about calling in Jim.”

“Sorry, I ended up at the hospital at the same time as Jake and Grace and we ended up having longer visit than I anticipated,” Maria sighed as he looked up the stairs. “The kids?”

“They are all asleep. Liam is in his old room doing whatever he’s up to, and Belle is watching a movie in her room.”

“So, no Colin?” Maria asked.

“Nope,” Isabel said and saw the sigh on Maria’s face. “Oh,” she laughed, “Is that still going on?” she asked of the new relationship between Colin and Sue as she knew how much it was a cause of frustration for Maria, more so than Michael but neither parent were that enthused by the match.

“Apparently,” Maria sighed because as much as she did want her kids to be safe, and she shouldn’t be upset because she could still love her son, and if Colin and Sue was happy then it was better than the alternative and especially after five years of uncertainty with Elizabeth, but still, she felt her son was getting serious about Sue, too even if Sue had known the family for years, still though it felt like it was too rushed but she couldn’t tell her son anything because Colin was so sure that the age difference didn’t matter, and maybe it didn’t, but still it gave her worries that she didn’t want these days. “Where is Michael?”

“Out in the garage, steaming…” Isabel admitted. “He needed some time… and I haven’t been able to go out and see if he’s calmed down at all”

“I see,” Maria sighed as she looked over at the liquor cabinet. “I think I need a drink…”

“Do you want some company?” Isabel asked. “We could go to Cow Patties?

“Don’t you have to get home?” Maria asked. “Kyle must be missing you?”

“Nope,” Isabel shook her head. “Kyle is with Jamie at a basketball tournament tonight and the girls are out of the house and have their own apartment?”

“Right,” Maria nodded as she sighed. “I think I’ll stick close to home,” as she reached for the vodka as she thought of the fact their children were growing up and developing new lives. “Where did the time go?”

“I wish I knew,” Isabel sighed as she could see the weight and burden her friend was under and knew the visit could not have been easy for Maria.

“So, how is she?” she asked. “How is Elizabeth?”

“Frankly, I am amazed she’s still with us…” Maria deeply signed. “I don’t know honestly how she could be…”

“I know,” Isabel nodded. “Sometimes, we manage to hang on when others are taken with a lot less…”

“How do I handle the fact my daughter is seriously suicidal and that she though that dying was the means to an end than coming home or seeking our help?” Maria paused. “And in the end, it might be the only thing that keeps her from life in prison”

“You know, don’t you” Isabel asked.

“That she planned to kill herself?” Maria asked. “Isabel, she had planned it all out, and she almost succeeded, and it wasn’t her first one” she cried. “Wait, how could you know, I just found out.”

“Drew told me” Isabel said softly. “When she said good-bye to the boys for the last time, she said she was going someplace nice and that she was going to see an old friend of ours…”

“Who?”

“Alex!” Isabel nodded as tears came to her face and Maria paused and her own tears came down her face. “She was planning on dying…”

“You know that was probably Nicholas’s master plan all along. Force her into a position where she had no other option but to die” Maria murmured. “Use her, abuse her for as long as possible to get some satisfaction but force her to seek to such a state that she only saw death as an option, and to do it by her own hand so we couldn’t accuse him of killing her.”

“But she didn’t…” Isabel

“She came close,” Maria sighed. “She told me she phoned the tip in herself to get the boys removed and then hoped she would die anonymous death in a jail cell, but she was saved in the nick of time and then Nicholas found her in the hospital, and then forced her out…”

“She was looking out for the boys…” Isabel murmured.

“But she wasn’t looking out for herself, and she thought dying was better than coming to us” Maria said with a crushing realization that they had almost lost their daughter so many times. “She could have called us, and we would have been there in an instant.”

“She’s still with us, and she fought back” Isabel sighed. “I want to think maybe Alex was up there stopping her and talking some sense into her.”

Maria nodded as she felt anger at the world that had caused her baby so much pain. “But if he did, he delivered her back into Nicholas’s web”

“Until she finally saw nowhere out and started shooting” Isabel murmured.

“She felt she had no other choice. It was that, or she would be dead” Maria sighed as she saw the front door open and Colin walk into the house while Michael came in from the back way, as they both had overheard Maria’s last comment. “I am glad you are home,” she said to her son as he came to hug his mother as she looked at Michael who was still tense. “We should be going through this together…”

“How is Elizabeth?” Colin asked.

“She’s in a lot of trouble,” Maria conceded. “But we will get through this and help her as a family,” she sighed as she was starting to realize the collateral damage if they were all to separate and not a family as Colin nodded and took his bag up to his old bedroom while Maria sighed and looked at her husband “Michael, I have to believe she’s a fighter. I have to know we will get our daughter back.”

“She is back,” Michael said softly as he took his wife in his arms and hoped they could get some sense in this. “But we will bring her back to this house if it’s the last thing I do, and Max will make sure of it.”

Maria nodded as they all prayed, they were right.


*


Alexandra was packing her bags when the front door opened, and she saw her father walk in. She smiled as he frowned at the sight of the bags. “You knew I have to get to Washington tomorrow” she laughed as her father nodded. “I wish I could stay, but I can’t…”

“I know, I just don’t like we haven’t had time to spend time on this visit home. You and Carrie both because of the last few days” Max smiled as Alexandra put down the books and came to embrace her father. “But I know Washington is an amazing opportunity for you,” he smiled. “Interning on Capitol Hill for the summer?”

“It’s something I always wanted to do,” Alexandra smiled. “Getting into politics, but I’ll be back in August for the month before classes start up again and so we’ll have more time to spend together before I have to get back to Harvard.”

“Which I am glad about. Where is your sister?” Max asked as he looked around for the bustling face of Carrie who was even more on the go than her quieter sister who usually spent her time back in New Mexico with her boyfriend, Graham Hunter who she met in high school once they moved to Roswell and started at West Roswell. While Alexandra was at Harvard, Graham was at Las Cruces studying engineering, and they had a long-distance relationship, so they tended to spend most of their time together when Alex came back to town. Carrie meanwhile was single after a breakup with her boyfriend back at Duke, and so she was playing the field and very happy to be single but enjoyed working as a waitress as she worked towards becoming a writer as she found success in writing once she got to high school and found an outlet for her crazy ideas. So, she picked up shifts whenever back at home, at both the Crashdown and at Cow Patties. She tended to visit more than Alexandra due to her schedule.

“Working at Cow Patties. She should be home because she texted me that she was on the way home as she realizes she still needs to pack,” Alexandra assured her father who sighed relief. “How is Elizabeth?”

“She is in for a tough ride,” Max confirmed. “If you were around this summer, I might have drafted you for help on the case?”

“I am sorry I am not going to be around,” Alexandra smiled. “Do you think they are going to upgrade the charges?”

“Who knows. I want to say no, but this is a very public case and if they can make the case for premeditation, they might.”

“But it was spur of the moment, right?” Alexandra asked as she thought back to what she had to glimpse of the case, and from gathering with Grace and Carrie.

“Yes, but there is a lot of grey area in the story, but I do have a sense they might keep it at the charges they are at, but you never know with the law and the prosecutors because he’s already dead, so he’s not going to die again, despite how much we would like the chance to kill him.”

“Do you think you can give her a defense,” Alexandra asked.

“It’s still early, and she’s under evaluation” Max sighed but having to admit to himself that they might be leading up to some of mental instability defense with the repeated suicide attempts and having the boys taken away, and all the drugs she had been exposed to by Nicholas and herself, and then faking the pregnancy it led to the fact that she obviously wasn’t thinking rationally… “So, we have to wait and see how that comes back.”

“I know you will make it work,” Alexandra smiled up at her father. “You are best lawyer I know…”

“Thanks honey,” Max smiled at how fortunate he was to have the family he did, and for so long he didn’t think he would be able to have happiness once he thought he had lost Liz and it was only Grace, and now he was blessed by Alexandra and Carrie and their little brother in Christopher. He was truly blessed and would not take it for granted, not after he had witnessed the pain so often found elsewhere as the door opened and Carrie walked in. “How was work?”

“Lots of fun,” Carrie smiled despite the fact she was wearing a dress too sexy for Max’s liking, but he didn’t comment, and Alexandra could only shake her head as she remarked how different they were, despite being identical twins. “And too little time to do it all in,” she laughed. “Packing?”

“Yup,” Alexandra nodded. “Speaking of packing, are you packed? You are headed towards New York tomorrow, right?”

“Yup, internship at a publishing house but no, I am not finished packing yet” Carrie muttered as she knew that was why she dragged herself home despite the lure of more hours. “At least I get paid unlike you…”

“I am gaining valuable experience for the future,” Alexandra laughed knowing she was fortunate to be on a full scholarship at Harvard, and to be supported for the summer by her parents. Carrie also had a scholarship, but it only covered her a portion of her tuition and basic fees, so she needed to work to cover the rest. Max and Beth helped with tuition, but Carrie didn’t want the help over the summer or the rest of her college debt, and so Alex knew Carrie would be up for everything in such a big city over the summer, but they were very different people. “You want money to party?”

“I don’t party, much” Carrie defended herself.

“Funny, I can’t help but have a different impression about your life at Duke” Alexandra laughed, and Max could only look amused at the simple worries of his youngest daughters and wouldn’t want anything different given the earlier calamity of their older sister’s life, and what had ultimately happened to Elizabeth so studying too much or even partying too much is just fine with me “Where is your mother?”

“Upstairs as I think she went to bed” Alexandra admitted as she did not care for how tired her father did look. “Can we have a big family breakfast in the morning before I go?” as she wanted to be in the embrace of her family before heading out into the real world.

“I am sure we can come up with something” Max nodded as he was realizing how tough a day it was, and how draining it was. “I think I’ll turn in to. So, good night girls. Stay safe, okay?”

Alexandra and Carrie nodded as Max went to find his wife upstairs. Alexandra could only sigh at the weight on their father’s shoulders. “Elizabeth is in big trouble” she commented as she closed her bag.

“At least Dad in here to help…” Carrie murmured as she also saw the enormous challenge ahead for their father and prayed, they could finally get some answers, and some peace at the end of this latest crisis to plaque the families.

Alexandra nodded as they both got back to packing for their individual summer adventures.


*


Upstairs, checking in on Christopher, Max was reassured to see the brown hair popping out of the blanket and the lump of a child sleeping in his bed, and sound asleep. Beth saw Max in his eyes as he was almost a carbon copy of his father. Max was just happy to be blessed with the ability to watch his son grow up, and wished he could have had that chance with the twins and for Beth to be able to experience this with someone after only getting to experience two years with Grace before they were robbed of so much… Her memory never fully came back, but she gained enough to merge into a form of both Beth and Liz but kept the name Beth because she had rebuilt her life and her career and it didn’t seem fair to go back to Liz when she didn’t know the basis of that life and she already had achieved so much under her new identity and Max was just happy to be given the chance at loving Beth, and every bit of Liz that was within Beth.

Yet she did embrace Liz’s life, and Jeff and Nancy took on the ability to have their daughter back albeit by a different name, because like Max, they were blessed with a second chance as they got to know the new woman their daughter was, and the addition of Alexandra and Carrie and then Christopher. Grandchildren made everything easier to handle.

Walking into the master bedroom, he smiled when he saw the love of his life sound asleep in bed. Getting undressed, he slipped into the bed and snuggled up to the only woman he ever loved and knew if anything happened to her now, he would not be able to move on because they were too connected. Too much of his life was connected to the family they built together, as Beth’s eyes opened and felt the addition of the warm body next to her, “Um, you feel nice” she said softly as she awoke as she leaned in for a kiss that Max gladly gave to her. “I missed you…”

“I missed you more,” Max said softly as found themselves giving their all to each other with a passionate kiss. “Carrie’s home…”

“Good,” Beth said fed by the intoxication of his kisses “Alex wants a family breakfast in the morning before she leaves,” Max said soothing.

“Convenient because Grace and Jake took the old room over the garage tonight, as they didn’t want to drive home” Beth said softly. “How bad is it Max?”

“Bad, but I don’t want to talk about it now, because I love you and you are the only woman I have ever loved and feeling you now, just makes me melt and want you all the more…” Max murmured as he started to kiss her shoulder, and the warmth of his touch came down her arms as she found herself melting, and moments later her nightie got thrown off the bed and onto the floor and they fully fell into each other, as they tried to get away from the negatively and just embraced the magic of being together.

“I love you too Max” Beth breathed as they continued to embrace as they slowly allowed the hours to go by in each other’s arms.

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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 12 - 06/13/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Sat Jun 13, 2020 10:32 am

“You know you can call us anytime?” Max was saying the next morning as they all shared breakfast as a family before Alexandra had to catch her flight to Washington. It was a rare chance to be together, as a family. Eva was sitting in her highchair at the table as Grace was feeding her some spicy food that she seemed to crave already at one. Bland did not usually go down well with Eva, and Jake was constantly amused by it. She was a mini version already of Grace but had a lot of Jake in her too, so her hair was lighter than the dark that her mother favored and her eyes were wide and expressive and she was already an out-going little girl who was the apple of her family’s eyes as she had gotten them through some heavy turmoil.

“Of course,” Alexandra smiled as she ate her eggs as she giggled at the fun Eva was having with her breakfast. Grace was not eating much because she was scheduled to meet later with Sue for a later breakfast, so she did not want to spoil her attitude, so she took on the feeding of her daughter. “It’s not going to any different than being in Boston at school, but I’ll miss being here during the summer” as she had spent her previous summer vacations helping her father and his office, and this would be a complete departure for her but she was thrilled by the opportunity because one day she planned to head into politics and she wanted as many in’s as possible when that eventually did happen.

“New York is more interesting,” Carrie laughed at the by the book nature of her sister. Alexandra was too cautious according to Carrie. Alexandra had the high school sweetheart and no fun life. Carrie wanted to just have fun because too much was serious and at the same time, she knew they had to be careful, but hopefully now that Nicholas was dead… they could find some balance.

“Just be careful, okay?” Max asked. “You don’t know what is out there…”

“I promise Dad,” Carrie smiled sweetly as Max only shook his head as they knew how rash Carrie could be, but they all knew that she managed to know where to draw the line. “I am just excited about being in New York this summer.”

“New York wasn’t a good experience for me,” Max commented as he thought of the Summit. “So, I hope it is for you…” he sighed as they continued to enjoy their breakfast as before long Christopher went off to watch cartoons’ before he went off to Kindergarten. Beth went off to get dressed for the drive to the airport to drop off Alexandra, and then for going to her family practice that she set up a number of years before, and Max sighed as he had to get over to Michael and Maria’s as Elizabeth was due to meet her therapist that morning, and he couldn’t see her until later.

“Can we save Elizabeth?” Grace asked before she went to get ready for breakfast.

“I hope so,” Max nodded sighed as he thought of how hazardous this was for them and not what he imagined in third grade that a tiny little brunette would notice him nor when at sixteen when he actually did get that girl to notice him, and when they fell in love and faced all the trauma they did. All he wanted was to have a home, and Liz in his life, and he got so lucky in that regard and now to know how things had gotten out of control.

“Do you girls ever think about the secret?” Max asked and Grace, Alexandra and Carrie’s faces showed surprise and yet they knew instantly what their father was referring to.

“You mean that” Grace asked with surprise as she tried to follow her father’s track of thinking and she did not know where she was going with it.

“Yes,” Max muttered. “When Michael, your aunt and I were young we never imagined having the secret exposed and yet when we did let in your grandparents, we thought it would at least bring some safety?”

“It does” Alexandra murmured “Sure, I wish more people knew, but it’s not like it’s an easy secret and it would open us up to a lot of confusion in the outside world as they wrestle with the knowledge and what they think they know, and what they don’t know about us”

“But they would know,” Carrie muttered as she thought of her breakup with Justin. She knew he had gotten suspicious that she was odd, and different from other girls and she knew she couldn’t tell him why sometimes she did odd things, and when Alex who had been dating Graham since high school couldn’t tell him and they were so in love, how could she tell Justin and therefore they eventually broke up and only then it hit her how much she did care about him, and it was now over.

“Do you wish Graham knew?” Max asked. “I know Grace is different because Jake has always known but you and Graham, you and he are serious, right?”

“Is this your way to ask how serious?” Alexandra laughed at her father’s question.

“No,” Max said. “I had the unfortunate experience of knowing way too much of your sister’s love life when she was even younger than you are, so I rather you keep it to yourself” he said to smiles from Grace who glanced at Jake who also smiled even though it told of a very difficult time for their family and Max nodded because despite the knowledge of the general whereabouts of the kids due to their trackers, he kept it mostly off limits to what was truly going on with his kids who were now adults so not the repeat the discomfort of knowing too much because Grace at sixteen had led to a lot of unfortunate times. “So, as long as you’re happy, and he’s good to you then that is all that matters to me.”

“He is, Dad, I promise” Alexandra smiled as Carrie grumbled at how happy her sisters were…

“You will find someone,” Max assured his daughter as he focused on Carrie.

“I don’t want anyone,” Carrie muttered as she was burnt out on the notion of love and wanted fun, and carefree times. “Grace and Alexandra can have that luxury, and I’ll have my fun.”

“Whatever you say,” Max murmured and knew Carrie was truly feeling burnt by her breakup with Justin and he wondered if she would find some happiness in New York, in whatever direction she was looking. “But no, I was just curious if you didn’t have to lie to him anymore to anyone, would you rather it that way?” he asked of Alexandra who Max knew was very happy with Graham and it was going to become serious sometime soon because they had spent years together and he knew from a thorough investigation that the boy was a good one.

“You mean like tell the whole world?” Grace asked suspiciously and Jake looked on alert.

“We wouldn’t have to keep such a secret,” Max sighed. “We tell who we trust, and it just would be the way of life for our families, so what do you think about that?” he wondered about something that had been among the discussion of the adults in the years since Nicholas had hit, and to see Elizabeth spin out of control.

“That would be big Dad” Grace asked as she exchanged a look with her husband and then looked over at her sisters. “Wouldn’t it bring more drama to our lives?”

“It could,” Max conceded. “But we also have seen the burden that it’s put on you given the world we’re facing is not as kind or gentle as it was when I was younger.”

“Your world was a nice and gentle?” Jake asked dubious because of all they knew of their parent’s generation, and how they had battled their secret and all the danger that had led to his sister being attacked, and forever being changed, and for his family to be altered forever.

“I don’t recall it was ever that gentle?”

“Okay tamer,” Max allowed. “I am not saying it wouldn’t come without any it’s challenges, but it would allow you guys to be honest, and the veil of secrecy would be lifted.” He asked as Beth came downstairs and overheard the discussion and her eyebrows went up at the thought of the world opening for the families, and whether that was a good thing.


*


“So, you tried to commit suicide?” the doctor asked Elizabeth as they met in her room over at the hospital. The night had been one of being restless for Elizabeth as she was not yet used to her new surroundings or to accept that there was no chance for Nicholas to catch up with her and force himself on her, to capture her again. She was safe and sound, and she didn’t have to fear what be in the shadows, and still it was tough adjustment when the room grew dark, and the memories of the bad times was prevalent as she also couldn’t help but flash back to her childhood and the dreams she once had, and the ones that had all vanished and how much she missed her family, and her sons. She yearned to see the tiny faces and know something was going right at least. She also spent much of the last hour of the appointment being silent and not talking, which got the doctor trying to bring something out of her patient. “You know you have to talk, otherwise the report the court is going to get is that you’re competent to stand trial and your lawyer won’t be able to use a mental defense if that is his plan…”

Elizabeth knew but she had not wanted to talk, and yet she knew her future riding on a positive or negative report from the doctor over the next few weeks. She had been trying to ride out the time like she had done successfully before, but this doctor was more insistent and her future did ride on what the doctor did say to the court, as she sighed “Which time, you have to be specific” Elizabeth muttered as she came back to reality and focused on the doctor who wanted to poke and prod.

“So, there were more than the one last year that got you hospitalized?” the doctor asked.

“Dr. Lee, yes there was more… half a dozen probably over the last five years. Last years was the higher profile one,” Elizabeth muttered as she focused on their discussion and saw the surprise look of her doctor “Does that surprise you?”

“And you didn’t seek help?” Dr. Lee asked as she tried to get an assessment of the patient who until now had clammed up. She knew from the nurses that the patient had been restless all night, and barely had settled down and she knew the tox screen they did on admittance came back clean, so the patient was not on drugs. She also knew that the patient had a family who appeared to love her and wanted to help her, and it was a direct contrast to the picture she was getting from the case file on Elizabeth.

“Couldn’t…” Elizabeth muttered even though she knew that was a lie. “No one would help me,” sighed and knew that was indeed the truth. She had been stuck with Nicholas, and there was no getting out until she took her exit into her own hands, and went out her way… Otherwise I would be dead… those idiots need to realize that…

“That is not true, you were hospitalized with this latest one and they would have wanted to help you. And I know they called in your family, and they would have wanted to help you, but you did not stick, you disappeared?”

“It wasn’t by choice,” Elizabeth muttered as she flashed back to the brief lucid time she had in the hospital, and how much she wanted to be gone from the world. “My so-called husband wanted me with him, and so I didn’t have you a choice.”

“You always have a choice,” Dr. Lee asked as she could sense her patient had real bitterness about her husband.

“Funny they always say that but, in this case, I really didn’t. I got myself into this mess and he screwed up my plans, and he didn’t give me a choice and forced me to go along with him otherwise I could have ended it all… which would have been a lot more peaceful and saved a whole lot of pain for my family, and my kids.” Elizabeth sighed.

“How did he force you?” Dr. Lee asked.

“Drugged me, and I fell for it but then that is how he always wanted me… drugged, and anyways he screwed up my perfectly good plan. It would have saved everyone a lot of heartache that is for sure.”

“What was your plan?” Dr. Lee asked.

“To die, if he hadn’t forced me to go off with him, or drugged me to accomplish than I could have killed myself and my family wouldn’t have to look at me in here or have the knowledge that I am going to spend the rest of my life in prison for killing someone who I should have killed years ago. Allowing me to die that day would have saved a lot of heartache for everyone, and my kids won’t have to think of their mother as someone who is a killer”

“So, you were planning on dying?” Dr. Lee asked.

“Which is why I got my kids taken away from, and why I got thrown into jail completely high, and tried to slit my wrists, if only they hadn’t saved my life, being dead would have been so much easier on everyone and that includes me”

Dr. Lee was startled to see that Elizabeth was so frank and insistent that ending her life was the best way to save her family. “Why is it important to save your family the heartache, can’t you see that dying only adds to it?”

“Not in this case. All I have done is give them pain, since that day when I was fifteen” Elizabeth muttered. “Nicholas should have killed me when he had the chance, and then he would have gotten the revenge he wanted from my family, and we could have been spared all this crap” she murmured.

“Better yet, I shouldn’t have woken up from my coma?”

“You think your husband is the one who kidnapped you when you were fifteen” Dr. Lee asked, knowing that it was popular theory among the family and the media but the authorities had largely disapproved except the town Sheriff which had the conflict of being Elizabeth’s grandfather.

“I don’t think it doctor, I know it” Elizabeth muttered. “Others may have inflicted the horrors on me, but he was the mastermind and the system allowed him to get off scot free because they thought I was a teenage addict, too crazy to be telling the truth,” she murmured. “They didn’t care about the pain I suffered. All they cared whether they could prove it and they didn’t know the bastard has ways to make sure he can get away from any suspicion”

“What ways?” Dr. Lee asked.

“You wouldn’t understand,” Elizabeth tried to clamp down on spilling too much and the doctor could tell there was a layer underneath that her patient was hiding.

“So, you have a problem with the system?”

“I know it’s out there to help but they didn’t help me, and allowed the bastard to get away with it and to just ignore what it meant to me for him to be out there and have the ability to worm back into my life, and to seduce me back into the trap he had set for my family,” Elizabeth muttered. “I know it does a lot of good because I saw in my grandfather, but at the end the day, it does squat when you really need it to help…”

“I don’t know much about your case,” Dr. Lee mentioned. “But I am told the man who was the suspect disappeared before authorities could catch him?”

“I wish I didn’t have to remember,” Elizabeth muttered. “They let him get away, when they had him, but then it’s my own fault because I didn’t speak up. So, it is just as much as my fault as the authorities so I cannot blame them completely because it is me who put me in this place, I am in.”

“Was the reason why you got thrown into jail and planned to kill yourself a shot at the authorities?”

“Only if I was that smart,” Elizabeth muttered. “I didn’t think they would care if I died, because they would see me as just another addict, and I didn’t think they would save me in time, but I was wrong…”

“Your file tells me your heart stopped for at least 10 minutes, and your brain was deprived of oxygen before they got it going again” Dr. Lee asked. “It’s a miracle that you even survived…”

“I wish I wasn’t a medical marvel, and out of this stinking world” Elizabeth muttered. “Then my mother and father wouldn’t have to worry, and my sons can grow up not knowing their mother was indeed a killer, or that the horrors that I went through which easily could be a sci fi movie and that I did everything to rescue them from…”

“You say you love your sons?” Dr. Lee asked.

“More than anything,” Elizabeth said as she tried to reign in her pity party. “Despite how they came to be, they were best things to come from the last few years,” she sighed as she thought of Emily and knew if only, she had come later than when she did. “Drew and Mick are better off away from the horrors I inflicted on them by forcing them to live the life I was living. My parents are better for them than I would…”

“Shouldn’t you fight to be there for them if you love them?” Dr. Lee asked. “Do you still want to die?”

“Well I am, here aren’t I?” Elizabeth asked. “I got clean, and I am not going to slip back but then what good is that if I am looking at the next couple of decades in prison?” she muttered. “I do want to see them again, and my family. I love them, and I need to be here to see them, so maybe there is some good in not dying but still I think that dying would have saved them the pain they are forced to live through now.”

Dr. Lee nodded as she got up, and soon the appointment ended as Max was arriving when she was leaving the room. “Dr. Lee?” Max asked as she saw the doctor coming out of Elizabeth’s hospital room. “So, how is Elizabeth?”

“She definitely has a lot of issues…” Dr. Lee sighed as she thought of the patient and knew that her initial opinion was that the worst thing for Elizabeth was to be in prison. It would only egg her on and bring back the possibility that suicide was the only option but then it was early… “It might take a lot of work to see her come through them…”

“So, any conclusions?” Max asked.

“It is only the beginning but she definitely is very troubled so I am hesitant to render an opinion, so let us wait to see how the next couple of weeks will go and then you’ll get your answer…”

Max nodded as he let the doctor and watched as Elizabeth pace around her room but didn’t go in and left the hospital a few minutes later and if he had peeked into the room, he would have heard on her secret phone. “You kept me in there knowing what he would have done. You told me to lie. You knew he would kill me, so I had no choice but to defend myself” she said into the phone. “I don’t care if it messes up the larger case, get me out of here or tell the truth”


*


“What do you think of Dad’s big epiphany?” Alexandra asked of her mother as Grace had just left, and now Alex was loading her bags into the car because Beth was driving her to the airport. “It would change everything, wouldn’t it?”

“That was the first I heard of it,” Beth admitted. “At the end of the day, it’s up to him, and I guess you guys…”

“It would lead a different life for us all, and for Christopher as he grows up?” Alexandra asked as they thought of her little brother whose life would be vastly different than that of his older siblings if their secret were out in the open. “And for all the smaller kids… and future members of our family.”

“Would you want Graham to know?” Beth asked.

“Yes,” Alexandra admitted. “I hate having the secret between us, and I know he has questions but he loves me enough to not ask them, and yet still not having to be so secretive about my abilities would help, because who know what will happen with the future” she murmured as Carrie nodded because the secret had come between her and Justin and while there were other reasons why she broke up with her boyfriend, still the fact she had abilities she had to keep from him was a sore point and knew neither and Alex was as lucky as Grace to have someone she loved know the truth, so for it to come out into the open, it would change things…

Beth nodded as hugged her daughter and stepped back and brought in Carrie into the conversation. “You two make us proud every day, and whatever does happen we know you will manage it, however hectic it becomes, and it won’t get you down.”

Alexandra nodded. “I’ll be back…”

“You know how to reach us, and if anything gets dire… Isabel has her own ability to reach out to if you can’t reach us by phone,” Beth murmured as she also knew they had the trackers to be able to tell them but once they were out of New Mexico, they sometimes gave unreliable readings and so she and Max will have that to worry about in the coming weeks, but the most important thing was the kids would be working towards their dreams.. “Right?” Beth asked at the thought that she and Max were getting used to the kids being apart from them and going off to university in other states.

The knowledge that Alexandra and even Carrie would be spending the summer away from them was somewhat frightening now that Elizabeth was back, and no one knew exactly that would bring out into the world, but then deep-down Beth knew her youngest daughters could handle it. She just wished she and Max could deal with it, but the fear never did leave you when you have kids out in the world “You do both know we love you, right?”

“I love you too,” Alexandra as she hugged her mother, and watched their mother hug her sister as she concentrated on Carrie. “You take care of yourself in New York okay, and don’t party too much…”

“And you shouldn’t spend too much time with those politicians because we all know what kind of corrupting influence they can be…” Carrie laughed as Alexandra only shook her head as she fully knew her sister didn’t trust the profession she saw her entering one day, as she hugged her sister and then got in the car, and Beth who hugged her daughter once more and said her good-byes, and Carrie accepted them as she watched her mother get into the driver’s side of the car and drive off to the airport as Carrie sighed and knew she had to finish packing because she was expecting Naomi within the next hour or so, so they could start their own journey towards New York.


*


“So, what’s going on?” Grace asked as she down in a booth at the Crashdown. The café was full which pleased her and knew it would please her grandparents, and she didn’t know if she could get a table, but she saw Sue watching the crowd and her as she walked in and sat down at the booth. “Sorry if I am late. I was saying good-bye to my sisters.”

“Which one?” Sue asked.

“Both actually. Alexandra had to get to the airport and Carrie wasn’t going to be that far after her as she’s driving on a road to trip to New York for her internship.”

“Alone?” Sue asked as she knew the inner dynamics of the giant clan. “I am surprised your parents would agree to that…”

“She’s not that naïve,” Grace laughed. “If she had tried then that would definitely be a non-starter even before the last few days so Carrie wouldn’t have dare try that one on Mom and Dad. Fortunately, though for her, her best friend Naomi is also going to New York to try her hand on Broadway, so they are rooming together for the summer as they both try to for their dreams with Carrie in the publishing world and Naomi in the theatre.”

“Cool,” Sue nodded. “New York definitely is a place to find a good time in”

“Yes, it is,” Grace nodded as she looked around and saw the bustling of the diner and knew it would please her grandparents, and Jeff walked out of the backroom and his face lit up with the glance of his eldest granddaughter, and she smiled before focusing back on Sue. “Jake and I enjoyed the city when we went on our honeymoon.”

“So, can I ask, how is married life? How are Jake and Eva?” Sue asked as she felt drawn into the incredible life her friend was leading because she knew it wasn’t every day you marry your high school sweetheart and start an incredible life with a baby while battling the ups and downs of medical school.

“Perfect,” Grace smiled and meant it. “Eva is growing like a weed, and it’s amazing she’s only one.”

“Sorry I couldn’t come to the party,” Sue laughed as she took the picture that Grace gave her as she sighed as she looked at the little girl. “Wow Grace, she’s such a combination of both you and Jake,” she sighed as she then frowned, and Grace could not help but catch it.

“What’s wrong?” Grace asked. “About the party, we understand. After all, it is only her first birthday, and we knew you had to work…”

“Among other things,” Sue sighed.

“Sue, what’s going on? Grace asked as she knew something was up. “Clearly something is going on. Is everything going alright with Colin?” she asked as she knew despite the reservations of Michael and Maria, she and Jake were a supportive of Colin and Sue because they did seem like they were a good match despite the age difference. So, she wanted her best friend to have the same happiness that she had been able to find with Jake.

“No, everything is fine. Colin is great” Sue sighed despite feeling the weight of the world and choices that were being made, and futures now set on a different course. “Honest.”

“I am glad, so what’s wrong?” Grace asked. “You look like you’re stressed about something…”

“It’s nothing,” Sue sighed as she tried to reassure her friend and tried to smile. “It is not important. So, have you seen her Grace?” she asked as she frowned at the thought of her childhood best friend and the reminder of how life could change in a split second. “Elizabeth, how is she?”
Knowing when someone is changing the subject, Grace allowed it “Briefly last night,” murmured. “In the hospital as she’s been moved there for an evaluation?”

“Do you think it will save her from prison?” Sue asked.

“I have no idea,” Grace sighed as she thought of what Elizabeth had revealed and how troubled her friend was, and how she needed treatment badly yet she knew that the justice system sometimes doesn’t care if you need mental help when they think you are guilty of a crime. “Which is why I wanted to speak to you,” she asked as she ordered some eggs and coffee.

“About what…” Sue asked. “How can I help?”

“We found a computer when we were searching Nicholas’s apartment, and we can’t access it because there some encrypted password or some other protection of the computer so I was wondering if you could do your wonders with it, and help us” she asked as she took the laptop out of her bag and laid it on the table and Sue’s brows raised as she looked at it.

“You can’t open it at all?” Sue asked as she took the laptop and looked at it and opened it and tried to do some of the simple cracking of the password. “Yeah it won’t open”, as she tried some of the easy ways to get in. “Do you know what is on it?”

“We haven’t gotten a clue, as we found other files that more of the pressing worries, we have but it makes us wonder what he would store on this thing” Grace sighed. “Can you help us?” she asked.

“Sure,” Sue nodded as she tried another trick, but nope. “But you know if you find anything on here to incriminate Nicholas and help Elizabeth, you can’t use it in court if the case goes to court, right?”

“I know, chain of evidence” Grace sighed. “But if we find anything to incriminate Elizabeth then that can’t be used…”

“Nice one,” Sue confirmed. “When do you need it done by?”

“She’s in the hospital for up to a month, so we have time” Grace assured her friend. “But the earlier we find anything, because if it does help Elizabeth… Even if we can’t use it in court and they can’t use it then maybe it will convince them to allow Elizabeth to get the help she needs and not to give her jail time.”

“She’s need’s help, doesn’t she?” Sue asked as she thought of the media accounts of the case and it was completely crazy to think of what she was reading in the media.

“Lots of it,” Grace confirmed. “But her parents, and my Dad are on the case and they will make sure Elizabeth gets the help she needs. So, why don’t you tell me what is bothering you because something obviously is…”

Sue sighed.


*

“So, do you still have a job” Colin asked as he walked into the kitchen of their house as he has just woken up and found his big brother in the house when he would have expected that that Jake would be work at the station or at his own home “And most of all, don’t you live elsewhere?”

“Yes, I do but unfortunately my job is going on without me given the situation we are in” Jake muttered at the surreal circumstances of their family as he poured some coffee. “I stopped in to see Mom, and make sure everything is at least functioning”

“She’s a mess,” Colin observed as her observed his older brother of the situation he found once he walked into the house and saw with his own eyes what was going on. “Dad too…”

“They will get through it” Jake mumbled It’s not like they don’t have the experience by now he mused as he had stopped in to see their mother but found that she was not at home and the house to be chaos because neither parent was at home, and the smallest members in Drew and Mick were also gone so he quickly made sure Belle got off to school and that she didn’t ditch which he knew she had the tendency at times despite her stellar grades as she still had a few days to go before the semester ended at her private school. At the same time, he had dropped Emily off at her own school before returning to house and waiting for a parent to return home.

“Man, Nicholas knows how to find the right place to knife us,” Colin muttered.

“The bastard,” Jake muttered lethally. “If only he wasn’t dead so I could do the job myself” Jake sighed as he cursed that he wouldn’t have a crack at killing Nicholas and the burden had to fall on his sister for numerous reasons as he still felt guilty about not being able to protect his sister from falling victim on that horrific night - Prom night. While the night had been memorable for many other reasons, still it would always haunt him and Grace that he hadn’t been able to save his sister from being kidnapped by Nicholas and he couldn’t prevent her from being torture by his hand and his orders.

“He got the carnage he wanted,” Colin muttered. “He tortured Elizabeth and Mom and Dad may never get over that” Colin observed as too much of their lives these past seven years had been defined by one man, and how much he had taken from their family when he took Elizabeth from them. “If only so much could be different.”

“At least Elizabeth is back, and we have a chance at making it up to her, and to help her…” Jake sighed.

Looking at the time, “So, I imagine Belle and Emily got off to school?”

“Yup,” Jake nodded. “Given they were still around when I showed up, I figured things slipped through the cracks. Not that Belle was going to ream them, but I made sure she got to school. Do you know where Dad is?”

“Who knows…” Colin sighed as he thought of his own pressing issues.

“So, what is up with you, you have been awfully helpful since you came home. Which I can’t help but think is very suspicious.” Jake asked as he changed the subject to their inner family dynamics as he could tell his brother had some weight on his shoulder, and it was not because of the burden of what their sister was going through. Jake could not help but wondered what was up with his brother “Although I could have used your help this morning.”

“Sorry, I slept in because I didn’t get in until late. I slept through the alarm. My life is fine. There is nothing wrong with me. Our family has more pressing worries… Elizabeth being the chief among them,” Colin muttered.

“We can worry about Elizabeth in a few minutes. Something is up with you, and I sense it now more than ever” Jake murmured. “So, what’s up?”

“Jake, everything is fine except not being able to stay at school with the press hounding the family” Colin muttered even though he suspected his secret would be coming out now that Sue was meeting with Grace, and Grace wouldn’t be able to keep the news to herself, and would be telling her husband.

“Colin, look, I know when you’re keeping something to yourself. You did enough of it when you were younger, so I know all the signs” Jake murmured as he could see the conflict on his brother’s face and knew there was something bugging his brother. “Although I have to tell you that if it’s something that will upset Mom and Dad, then I suggest that you might want to keep it to yourself for the time being.”

“Oh, I don’t plan on telling them until this crisis blows over…” because I am not that anxious for their reactions Colin sighed to himself as he knew this was not a battle he or Sue needed and yet it was approaching.

“That gets me curious. So, tell me, what don’t you want Mom and Dad to know?” Jake asked wary of his brother. “It’s me Colin. Let me be the big brother, so, why don’t you tell me what is up because I can be your gage in how Mom and Dad might react to whatever news you have to tell them. ” as he suspected his brother might have something to tell the family, and given how fragile everything was, it was best not to rock the boat.

“You have to promise not to tell them until I am ready for them to know, okay?” Colin asked of his brother and Jake instantly became wary.

“I make no such promise” Jake laughed. “You know I wouldn’t make such a promise, so you might as well tell me” Jake allowed. “Neither of them is going to want something that profoundly changes anything right now Colin. They already have enough dealing with Drew and Mick, and with Elizabeth is back and needing all our attention?”

“Fine, Sue and I are getting married…” Colin announced, and Jake’s jaw dropped because that was not the news he expected from his younger brother and knew from his expression, he continued. “Before you tell me that it is too soon, and that I am too young, and that it has been only six months. I know all that that okay but Sue’s pregnant, and of course it is mine. So, I am being responsible, and I want to be there for her and the baby and so I have asked her to marry me, and she has agreed. So, yeah you do not have tell me to keep the news away from Mom and Dad right now, because yeah, I know that Mom and Dad don’t need this type of news on top of everything that our family is facing” not until things have at least calmed down from the red hot flames that they are battling at the moment

“I would say not…” Jake stammered.

keepsmiling7
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Re: Always Tomorrow (CC, Mature) - A Reunion's Endgame - Chapter 12 - 06/13/2020

Post by keepsmiling7 » Sun Jun 14, 2020 4:46 pm

I can see a dozen problems on the horizon here.

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Parker1947
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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 13 - 06/15/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Mon Jun 15, 2020 1:20 pm

“Whoa,” Grace murmured as she was responding to Sue’s news at the Crashdown as it totally surprising and something she had not expected to hear from her friend. While she knew that Sue and Colin were getting serious, yet, she had not expected this level of seriousness, not this soon. “Are you sure?” she murmured as she saw the glance on her friend’s face and knew that Sue was sure.

“Yes,” Sue nodded as she sighed at the news that had shocked her and Colin. “I have seen the doctor, and she confirmed it. I am due after Christmas…”

“Wow, just wow” Grace sighed as she felt for her friend. “I guess it’s congratulations, right?”

“It’s way too soon but yeah I am happy. Colin’s happy, and therefore we’re both happy about it and even thought we both know that it’s speeding up everything…” Sue sighed and knew it was too soon, but she couldn’t help herself and she wanted this to work out.

“It’s been only six months,” Grace asked. “Yeah it’s a little fast,” she sighed. “It took Jake and me a long time to get married, despite how long we knew each other… and to some, even we were rushing” she sighed of the long engagement she and Jake had after getting engaged when she turned eighteen. “But you can’t stop love…”

“No, you can’t,” Sue murmured.

“You do know you could both raise the baby together and not get married right away” Grace asked. “If you’re getting married just for the sake of the baby, that might not be the answer either because sometimes love only goes so far and you have to really want to be together, and to commit.”

“It’s not only the baby,” Sue sighed because knew all this. “I wouldn’t be marrying him if it was just the baby” Sue muttered as she thought of the relationship that she and Colin had found as it had surprised her that he would even be interested in her, and in some ways, he was the opposite of her usual type but one day, they took a chance on each other and she found the one. “I love him.”

“I know you do, but still…” Grace sighed. “You know that Jake and I have been a big supporter of the two of you and I think Elizabeth would too if she had been here or in any condition but still, it’s a lot…”

“I know,” Sue sighed. “I know he’s only turning 20, and I have several years on him, but I love him and he’s special and not only in just the obvious ways” she said without elaborating, and Grace laughed because she knew as well as anyone what Sue was referring to. “He makes me happier than any guy has ever made me, and I just know he’s the right one. Truthfully, I have had a crush on him for a long time…way before we even started anything which is why you cannot tell anyone that aspect of it, okay.”

“Yeah, I won’t” Grace could not help but laugh. “I can’t judge given I dated Jake while he was older than me, and yet we encountered a lot of difficulty so I can’t be one to disapprove because I know that you two didn’t start up until well after he turned 18, and you two don’t have the difficulties that Jake and I had given our families.”

Sue nodded.

“But there will be people who judge because you are older than him…” Grace sighed. “We love our guys, but sometimes it can be tough to make it through the hard times, and so you need to be ready.”

“I know,” Sue sighed as she glanced at her friend. I know we have been lucky since Colin doesn’t look as young as he is, but still I do get the eyes when we’re out, and people ask despite it being only a few years.”

Grace nodded.

“It is his parents?” Sue sighed. “That is why we’ve been hesitant to say anything. Not only now with Elizabeth but beforehand because they have not our bigger boosters and it is not only his mother, but also his father, as he’s not completely happy with us…”

“They were even younger but yeah, they are going through a hard time” Grace acknowledged as she thought of what Maria and Michael were going through, and that was yesterday and now added the nightmare involving Elizabeth. “They will come around, eventually. Especially if there is another grandchild, and one they don’t have to let live with them.”

Sue smiled.

“They will come around. So, tell me, have you told your parents?” Grace assured her best friend as she knew how Maria’s disapproval rankled her friend and she knew a lot of it was irrational because of what she and Jake faced back when they were dating, and how the rumors went haywire and changed things for a them all, and at the same time, Colin and Sue’s circumstance might cause some eye brows to rise but they weren’t underage and they won’t be bringing the same outrage.

“Nope,” Sue shook her head. “Until I told you, I have been in denial about it. They also had their worries when they found out Colin’s age,” she sighed. “So, I wasn’t ready for the big battle that the announcement will cause…”

“They will get to plan for a wedding?” Grace asked. “Since your sister is still determined not to get married.”
Sue could not help but smile. “But they won’t be thrilled to know why the wedding has to be sooner than later. You had a long engagement, and here I have to get married sooner than later…”

“You don’t have to tell them…” Grace offered.

“They will know,” Sue sighed as she thought Elizabeth, and her friend’s request “So, the computer will be a nice side project for me while I deal with all this summer will bring.”

“If you need any help, let me know” Grace asked as she saw Maria and the boys come into the Crashdown and then her mother came in a few minutes later and smiled at the two of them. “I better get going.”

“If you see Elizabeth, tell her I’ll be there soon” Sue promised. “I do want to see her, but life has been so crazy.”

“No question,” Grace laughed “I will,” she smiled. “Do me a favor and don’t stress out because it won’t be good for either of you” she sighed as she hugged Sue and rushed off as Sue sighed as she looked across the restaurant as Maria turned the glance from her and went back to her discussion with Beth, as if she sensed something was off with Sue.

Sue did not even want to know what Maria would think but knew she would know all too soon…


*


“Yeah I would take your time telling that to Mom and Dad. The last thing they need is complications,” Jake muttered as he stared at his younger brother. “You know you can wait you know… These days you do not have to get married. You could wait, and in the meantime, raise the baby together”

“I love her Jake,” Colin sighed. “Look I know this is probably the wrong time, but I want to be with her, and even if it’s only six months I know she’s the one. When you think about it, well, we have known each other a long time, even before we took it to another level.”

“Right,” Jake murmured. “That is only because she was around the house because she was Elizabeth’s best friend, and Grace’s. Colin, you are not even 20, and she’s older and in medical school” Jake argued at the strange dynamics of their family or the fact he couldn’t really be advocate against because of his own life. “You know you could wait…”

“And I am in university, so it’s not like I am still in high school” Colin demanded. “You got married early, and engaged even younger”

“But we waited,” Jake acknowledged. “So that Grace could experience university, and even then, we got married before most people were advocating” he sighed as he thought of their wish to get married before Grace had graduated, and their parents wanted them to wait. Of course, we were headed for Boston after she graduated, so we had a concrete plan for our future.”

Colin nodded.

“We also were hoping beyond hope that Elizabeth would come back so that she could be there for our day, but when that was obvious not happening, only then did Grace and I know that the timing was right to get married, and delaying it only made it worse.” Jake sighed. “Colin, we had some hard years leading up to our day. So, in some ways, the wait made us more battle tested for what we would face once we got married. For you and Sue, well, it is only been six months for the two of you and bringing a baby into a young marriage, well, it is going to be change things. Sure, Eva came earlier than Grace and I were planning but still we were ready…”

“Are you ever ready?” Colin asked. “You were young. Mom and Dad were even younger, and actually had you when they got married?”

“But they lived more in those few years than you and Sue have or even Grace and me and you know full well that my relationship with Grace had its own complications…”

“Which didn’t stop you?” Colin muttered.

“But it’s one of the reasons I am back here and not still in Boston” Jake muttered. “It wasn’t only Elizabeth resurfacing last year before disappearing again that got us to come back, or even Eva being born. The rumors made their way to Boston and impacted how they saw my ability to do the job. As a result Grace ditched Harvard and while she’s happy and has been given every advantage to be at Las Cruces, it’s still not Harvard and it’s because of me, but we love each other and want to be together regardless and with Eva, it’s better to be closer to home” Jake murmured at the sacrifices his wife had to make for him, and he knew Grace didn’t regret her decision but he did at times because of the hassle he had brought to her life but they loved each other and wanted to make it work, and they were… “Colin, you may have been 19 when you two got together, but they will look at your age and wonder.”

“Let them wonder, we did nothing wrong Jake, and just like you and Grace did nothing wrong. The media eventually went away…”

“But not without lasting damage. Mom is wary of that happening again, especially once it gets out how long Sue has known our family.”

“As I said, let them. Nothing is wrong with us. Yes, it might be better to wait, but sometimes that decision gets taken out of our hands so screw it, there is a baby, and I want to be an everyday dad to him or her, and I want to give both the baby and Sue our name. Jake, I love her…”

“Then tell that to Mom and Dad and don’t let them get you down because they will eventually come around,” Jake encouraged. “It’s just that they have so much on their plate” Jake sighed. “But at the end of the day, they will want you to be happy… and they will accept you and Sue and will give their blessing.”

“I hope so…” Colin sighed as he thought of Sue. “But they better understand that we’re getting married whether they like it or not” as he left the room in a defiant posture which had Jake shaking his head and picking up his cellphone to call his wife.



*


“Why give Colin and Sue so much trouble?” Beth was asking as they met for coffee once, she got back from the airport, and before she headed back to the office. Maria had been at the park with the boys to try to relieve some stress and take a break from thinking about her daughter and Beth offered to meet her so they could chat and visit and now Drew sat with a milkshake and little Mick was drawing circles on a piece of paper.

“I am not,” Maria sighed as she had seen Sue leave after spending time with Grace and was disappointed by her reaction as she wished for something easy. As life was way too complicated, and nothing had been the same for seven years now, and she did not see it ending anytime soon despite the fact her kids were growing up.

“Yeah you are,” Beth asked. “Don’t you want your son to be happy?”

“I do, but I just wish things were easier and I didn’t have to deal with my kids growing up. I am a little burned out on the complications that come from being us and watching it with the kids. Even if Colin and Liam have shown not to have the drama associated to them as was the case with their brother and sister.”

“We can’t prevent them the pain that comes with growing up,” Beth asked. “As much as we want them to be shielded in a bubble, we can’t, and we have to let them live their life” she sighed as she knew what she and Max had faced with the kids and even Carrie to a lesser extent as she got over such a bad breakup from her first real relationship with Justin. She knew her daughter was still singed by the experience and burnt out, and yet Alexandra and Graham were incredibly happy. “We’re all very different, and that goes with the kids and they will grow from whatever tries to knock them down.”

“If I could have put Elizabeth in that bubble, then I would have a daughter today” Maria muttered.

“You still have one, but one who has had to go through battles that no one should have and yet it’s obvious that she’s coming out the other side”
Beth asked. “Someone lesser than who is would have been lost before now… with no chance of coming back to you and Michael or her brothers and sister.”

“I know,” Maria sighed as she thought of her daughter in the hospital.


*


There was a knock on the door, and it stopped the pacing Elizabeth was doing in her room as she thought of her situation and muttering negative thought about the call she had earlier as she looked around and knew she had yet to go for a walk and had stayed in her hospital room as she was still dwelling on the negative, when she came back to reality at the knock which was happening, and so she said, “Come in”

The door opened, and in walked “Finn?” she asked, surprised to see her former boyfriend. “I didn’t expect you?”

“I wanted to say hello and see how you’re doing” Finn murmured as he did not know why he had come. He was not working this morning when a sudden desire came to want to seek out Elizabeth and see how she was, and he followed that urge.

“It’s better here there in a prison cell which has seen my presence too often in recent years.”

“You’re looking better…” Finn asked as he was startled to see more tattoos that he remembered from before she disappeared as Elizabeth was now wearing clothes provided for her, and she was in jogging pants and a tank top.

“Yeah, I was a little flustered yesterday when we saw each other. I am sorry about that as it’s been a long time since I was back in Roswell or anywhere near my family, and to know they have to see me like this…” Elizabeth sighed as she noticed Finn noticing the tattoos. She sighed at the memories they brought.

Finn nodded.

“I thought you work these days?” Elizabeth sighed as she thought of how everyone was leading a life except for her, and hers had been in a suspended animation given what had happened over the last seven years. Her dreams of graduating and going off to university in dust, and she did not have a future except to hope she did not spend the next 30 years in prison for getting rid of Nicholas.

“I had a class this morning, so I’m not onto this afternoon” Finn murmured as he felt drawn to the hospital as it had been a restless night as Elizabeth had popped into his dreams and once his class was finished, he found himself driving to the hospital.

“Law school, right?”

“Right,” Finn nodded. “I am almost finished. Another semester to go”

“Cool,” Elizabeth smiled. “What made you decide to become a lawyer?”

“You,” Finn said honestly.

“Me, how?” Elizabeth asked, slightly stunned as she didn’t know what to think that she might have inspired her friends to come into their own and into high powered careers, and yet she didn’t have anything to work from except a wish to stay out of prison.

“With everything you know that happened, and I couldn’t help but be mad at the system over the fact they couldn’t catch and punish, you know who…” Finn murmured as he couldn’t bear to say the man’s name and now to know that for the while he could be live freely, well, his ex was embroiled in the bastard’s web.

“Yeah, him” Elizabeth nodded.

“I made me want to do something about it, to help those who are hurt and need help within the legal system. As they say, fight it from within”

Elizabeth smiled as she could not help but laugh. “Why is it that everyone around me seems guided by me, and they seem to have found their life mission except for me, and here I am about to lose it…”

“You have a chance now…” Finn asked. “You’re back?”

“Not if I go to prison for life…” Elizabeth sighed. “Which is a very real possibility because I didn’t make it very easy for myself, and my history will play into the case, and I don’t see where this ends up being good for me...”

“That’s not a done deal,” Finn asked as he knew the justice system well from his studies and what he knew of Elizabeth’s case, it was going to be tough, but he did hope that the judge could see that she was clearly suffering because of what happened to her when she was fifteen.

“I am not too sure of that,” Elizabeth sighed. “But I do appreciate you visiting because it is nice to know someone other than family wants to see me”

“You are special,” Finn smiled. “I wish things could have been different…” he asked with a smile and she could not help herself and she nodded. “I wished I could have convinced you to get help…” he asked. “It was obvious that you were struggling…”

“No one could have helped me,” Elizabeth sighed as she thought back to the beginning. “Even if I had wanted to be helped, which I did not, Finn, no one could have helped me because I made a deal with the devil and he was going to win every time. For the longest time I was trying to numb the pain and the memories so no, there was no one who could have helped me.”

“Why?” Finn asked.

“Because he knew my weakness and he exploited it and knew the last thing I would want him to do is hurt my family with what he had on them, and therefore he knew I was never going to leave unless I died…” Elizabeth muttered. “Of course, even if I were dead, he would have used me regardless to hurt them…”

“I am glad you didn’t,” Finn said softly because he could not imagine her not being in the world. “Die, I mean”

“Me too” Elizabeth sighed even though she still wished sometimes that Max hadn’t saved her that day in the old salt mine, and he had let her die so she could have prevented her family the worries they had today, so they could have long ago moved on, and yet something kept her moving forward and not letting her go, and here she was facing the choices she let get away in Finn as they both knew they were gluttons for punishment with whatever bond they felt for each other. They had always done this, come together when she was at her worse and then it all falls apart, as he took her hand and she felt a familiar feeling and knew it was felt good compared to all the bad feelings she felt over the years.

“About our, you know history” Finn tried.

“Don’t Finn, the past is the past. I screwed things up, and I’ll forever be sorry about that” Elizabeth admitted for more reasons than you know she mused to herself. “I hate that I hurt you. You were only trying to be supportive of me after what happened, and I do appreciate it and I am sorry I couldn’t tell you at the time.”

“You went through hell, and I am sorry I wasn’t able to protect you better” Finn murmured as it was a deeply seated fear that he left, to go call the limo, and it allowed for her to be taken… “I am so sorry…”

“It’s not your fault,” Elizabeth murmured as he was rocked by Finn’s feeling of guilt. “You didn’t know what was going to happen, so how could you have known?” she asked.

“You didn’t have your phone, but I did, and I could have taken the call while out there with you, and I didn’t have to leave the veranda. I allowed them to take you…”

“God Finn, they were going to take me whether you were there or not. I know Jake and Grace share the same guilt and yet I know Nicholas would have taken me regardless of whether you, or my brother and Grace were there and in fact it might have been worse for the three of you if you were there with me. They wanted me. They wanted Grace, and they would have taken us even if both you and Jake were there so do not feel guilty because you stayed safe, and I was taken. I wouldn’t have been able to take it if you were truly hurt because of me.”

“You would have been safe,” Finn asked.

“They would have hurt you and Jake, and still taken me. And they would have taken Grace and that would have been worse because they would have been able to accomplish their plan if they had both of us. I would love to blame you for leaving, but you had no idea what the plan was… No one did, and so I do not blame you… I don’t blame anyone but Nicholas, and me for being so weak not to fight back.”

“They told me that you tried to run…” Finn murmured.

“Which was a mistake. I should have been more careful, and it only allowed to hurt me more… If I only had been more careful…”

“You tried…” Finn murmured. “It’s not your fault and you shouldn’t take that all on you, because you tried to save yourself.”

“If only,” Elizabeth sighed as they seemed in their own world as they sat and stared at each other, only for a voice to interrupt their time together. “Oh, I am sorry,” came a new but familiar voice as the both turned and saw Grace grinning at them with Eva in her arms.

“I didn’t mean to interrupt” Grace smiled as she knew she and her daughter had intruded on something that she could not quite explain. “I thought you would want to meet Eva, your niece” she sighed. “But we can come back later…”

“No, I better go” Finn said getting up as he knew it would do good for Elizabeth to spend time with Grace and niece. “I have to get to work, but It was nice seeing you Elizabeth and I will definitely come back…”

“Do that,” Elizabeth smiled as she watched Finn walk out and close the door behind him, which left her in the room with Grace and little Eva…

“Don’t say it” Elizabeth sighed.

“You and Finn look close” Grace asked as she smiled because she had not known Elizabeth had still been so close to Finn before she vanished when she was 18. “I thought you two ended after you know…”

“We did,” Elizabeth lied.

“That didn’t look like you ended to me?” Grace asked as she sat down as Elizabeth eyed the baby and she saw instantly her brother in the little girl, and so much Grace and it hurt her to know that she had missed out on so much.

“We did end. We were not in a relationship once I ended things after I was home from the hospital, but you could say we were known to be “friendly ex’s” Elizabeth sighed with a smile of the memories. “Despite the fact that most of the time I was high on drugs, still we were known to hookup”

“You didn’t tell me that…” Grace asked.

“Honestly Grace, we didn’t talk much after you moved to Las Cruces for that year because by the time you came back I was literally too far gone to even want to discuss my sex life and by that time you know Nicholas had wormed fully back into my life” Elizabeth murmured as she remembered how she pushed Grace away in the wake of her friend moving to Las Cruces and she did start to sink..

“You could have told me” Grace sighed at the thought of how Nicholas had wormed into the very fabric of their clan. “We would have helped…”

“He by then had forced me to marry him so yeah I was not to be admit it to Mom and Dad because by then I too far and the drugs ruled everything, and even when Mom and Dad forced me into that rehab facility. As much as I fought it, yeah, It kept Nicholas away from me, but it didn’t stop the memories and the flashbacks which Nicholas was too happy to reinforce when he managed to worm his way into my life, and by the time I came out, the desire to ease the pain still existed as much as I wanted to fight it, and unfortunately Nicholas won the day as he kept blackmailing…” Elizabeth sighed.

“You could still have told us…” Grace asked. “He was trying to use us to hurt you, and we could help you stop him.”

“I know but I didn’t,” Elizabeth admitted as she wanted to change the subject. “So, this is Eva?” She asked of her niece and wanting to get off the topic of Nicholas.

Eva Elizabeth,” Grace announced. “After you of course and my mother”

“She’s precious,” Elizabeth admitted and could not help but think of her sons when they were babies, and how much she missed them. “I see so much of Jake in her…”

“But her appetite is very me,” Grace laughed. “She likes her food spicy.”

“So, chances are…” Elizabeth asked.

“We don’t know of course with her only being one, but chances are there…” Grace nodded. “We’ll have to see where it goes. Eva and Mick are already close friends” she announced as Elizabeth’s eyes went wide. “Yeah, the kids are all so close.”

“I miss them…” Elizabeth admitted.

“They miss you,” Grace nodded. “Emily, Drew are pretty close, and they are three musketeers with my little brother.”

“Wait, what, you have a little brother?” Elizabeth asked

“I don’t know if you remember but Mom was pregnant when you disappeared. She and Dad welcomed my little brother Christopher Maxwell five years ago, and so Christopher, Emily and Drew are super close.”

“Wow,” Elizabeth murmured as she had totally forgetting about Beth being pregnant “Does Emily you know, know?”

“She does,” Grace nodded. “Yeah, your parents were upfront with her from the moment when she could understand it. She still thinks it bizarre of course but she and Drew are super close despite the oddity of it all…”

“I wish I could have been there for the boys. I knew Emily was always safe, which is why I agreed to the adoption because I didn’t want Nicholas to have a chance with her and the boys, I wish things could have been different which is why I had to get them out of the apartment when I did…. Drew was seeing too much”

“Is Nicholas Emily and the boys’ father?” Grace asked softly.

“God no,” Elizabeth admitted. “The lines were blurred with Drew, but no, it was obvious from the moment he was born that Nicholas was not the father… and Emily, thankfully no. Despite the efforts to get me pregnant when this all started and afterwards, whenever I did get pregnant it always was someone else’s and I made sure not to even have a chance of being a mother if I knew for sure it was Nicholas.”

“Who is the father then?” Grace asked. “Do you even know?”

Yeah, I know Elizabeth mused because with all three, she now knew… Mick’s was no longer an issue, but the other two… today confirmed it.

“It’s a long story,” was all she said. “I have a fairly good idea with Emily and Drew. Mick is more of a I wish I didn’t,” she sighed as she thought of her kids. “I know who it isn’t, and who it probably was” she muttered. “Because there aren’t too many other candidates?”

“Then who?”
Last edited by Parker1947 on Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

keepsmiling7
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Re: Always Tomorrow (CC, Mature) - A Reunion's Endgame - Chapter 13 - 06/15/2020

Post by keepsmiling7 » Mon Jun 15, 2020 6:33 pm

Yea for Finn in law school....

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Parker1947
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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 14 - 06/18/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Thu Jun 18, 2020 9:31 am

Elizabeth wouldn’t say and yet Grace knew instantly when she arrived at the Guerin household to pick up her husband as they were taking the boys home because they were babysitting them for the evening as Michael was going to persuade Maria to go out to dinner, and to spend some quality time together so Jake and Grace offered to take the boys while Emily would stay with Belle, Colin and Liam.

To Grace it wasn’t as telegraphed in Emily because while her hair was getting browner with age, still she had a lot of Elizabeth in her but the moment she saw Drew, she knew who the father was and if he was Drew’s father than he would have been Emily’s too, because they did resemble each more than you would think if they were only half siblings.

“What?” Jake asked as they put Mick in the car seat, and made sure Drew was buckled up as they got in the car. Eva was in the other car seat, and Jake could notice that his wife was preoccupied as they started to drive to their place and had been since she arrived at his parent’s home. “Are you alright?”

“Nothing,” Grace sighed as her brain was whirling but she laughed at her husband’s concern. “All is fine, really, there is nothing to worry about on my end,” she sighed as she wondered what her suspicions would mean, and she tried to evade and move onto a new topic “How was it being at the house?”

“You know with my brothers and sisters, there is always drama to be had” Jake laughed as he quite liked that Colin’s news was normal for a change, and didn’t have dramatic ramifications for anyone by himself and Sue, and their futures. He suspected his brother and Sue would be happy, but one never knew, and he would take happiness after all they had to deal with Elizabeth “Colin’s news was definitely an eye opener…,” he sighed. “I don’t know how he is ready, but he’s sure he is…” he allowed. “But it is life changing, in a good way, at least”

“Do your parents know yet?” Grace asked as she looked for a way out of her thinking. “Sue is sure to.”

“Fortunately, no, because then Dad wouldn’t be getting Mom out of the house because we would be hearing the earthquake if it had been revealed. So, Colin is keeping it to himself for the moment”

“Probably wise,” Grace murmured, and she knew as well as anyone that it was hard to gage her in-law’s and their reaction to the news after so much had gone down in the past with the families.

“So, what is it with you because you do sound like you are distracted” Jake asked as he continued to drive. “You saw my sister, right. She’s okay, right?”

“Oh, she’s fine,” Grace said immediately to assure her husband. “Actually, she was more engaged and more at ease than she was yesterday” Grace acknowledged as she thought of her friend and sister-in-law as felt like the world was righting itself that she had her best friend back, after losing her for so many years. The loss of Elizabeth had major impact on her despite her ability to move on, and settle down with Jake, and have Eva. She and Elizabeth had been so close, and to lose that relationship had been life changing, and now she had a chance at reconnecting again, and she wanted that chance. “She seems to be adjusting to being back”

“Well, that is good,” Jake nodded. “Then what is it?” he asked as he pulled up in front of the house they were renting. It had been their home for six months as they had been living in an apartment when they first came back from Boston but the house became available, and they were able to arranged the rent despite it being more than their previous place and now they found it freeing to have the space to have people visit them and as Eva got older…

“Let’s talk about that later okay.” Grace nodded as Drew could overhear their discussion and he knew enough to know something was up…


*


“Only one kid at home?” Max murmured as he walked into the kitchen as his wife was making dinner. “It is quite the change…” he asked as he leaned in to kiss Beth who smiled as they looked over at Christopher who was busy playing a videogame. “What’s for dinner?”

“Lasagna, leftovers” Beth murmured as she relished these moments. “The office was busy this afternoon once I was able to get into the office and had to work in the patients, I had pushed aside these last few days.”

“Perfect,” Max smiled as they kissed again. “Tonight, I don’t need anything more than you and Christopher, and the lasagna is just an added delicious bonus.”

“You know how to say just the right things,” Beth said as she took in the kiss as she knew she was blessed and she wasn’t going to take her blessings for granted as across the kitchen, their son, Christopher looked up and scrunched his face “Gross,” Christopher muttered as he got up and took his game out of the kitchen to the laughter of his parents as Max watched as his wife finished the preparations for dinner as he strived for normalcy after a chaotic few days. “This feel’s nice, so normal.”

“Kids…” Beth laughed as they watched their son run out of the kitchen.

“Speaking of kids, has Carrie called?” Max asked as he knew Alex had gotten to Washington safety and to her hotel room they were paying for her, for the summer to make sure she lived in a safe building with lots of protection if needed, and Alex had texted to say she was fine.

“Not yet, but she did text to say they have stopped for the night and she’ll call later” Beth assured her husband. “From what I can gather, all is well with her and Naomi so far…”

“Good,” Max sighed as he wasn’t sure if he should be assured of his daughter’s safety knowing she was on the road, but she had a good friend as a buddy, so he had high hopes and despite his panic attack the other night, he did know Carrie had a knack of punching first and asking questions later and that would serve her well…

And at least Nicholas was dead, but he knew the greatest threat was that they did not know if they had someone else lurking out there, because they did have other enemies. Nicholas might be crossed off the list. But others might come out of the woodwork, and he worried for that day, and prayed he was just being hysterical.

“Elizabeth?” Beth asked.

“She’s safe in the hospital,” Max sighed. “I am still working on getting her some relief…”

“Do you think they will bite…” Beth asked.

“I hope so, but I do get their position because they are looking at it from a case perspective. It’s not easy to let it go, or go to the a more lenient side but then I look at Elizabeth and know how much Nicholas defined her these last seven years and I hate to think that she has to spend the rest of her life in prison for something I would have done or any of us would have done in her place if only we had the chance” Max sighed as he thought of the dangers still ahead of them. “So, it’s a crappy case.”

“Do you really think about it, Max?” Beth asked as she thought of his talk with the kids earlier that day.

“What?” Max asked as he took a beer out of the fridge and got out a glass and some ice as he relished the ability to relax and spend time with his wife and his son.

“I heard you with the kids this morning,” Beth asked. “Do you really think about outing yourself to the public, you know, about the family secret.”

“Oh,” Max asked silently as it was something still in the back of his mind.

“Were you being serious?” Beth asked.

“I truly don’t know,” Max said honestly because truly he did not know if he wanted to open that box yet. “The more I see of Elizabeth’s situation and know what Christopher faces as he grows up, and the youngest of the Guerin clan, well, I can’t help but wonder if things would be better if we just didn’t have to lie anymore because it’s a hell of a secret to carry. “If it were to happen, what would you think?”

“Max, it would be more your secret than mine,” Beth asked. “It’s up to you if you want go down that road. It’s not for me to judge.”

“Judge away Beth. Because it would involve you too. Not only the kids, or Christopher if we opened the pandora box of our identity to the world” Max said softly. “If we were to be honest, then they will sure look back to our younger years and they will ask questions of you too” he worried. “Especially if they go digging and look at the shooting at your parent’s place when we were kids, and how you were hit, and you magically survived without any injuries. They will wonder if I helped you. So, it does not just impact me Beth, it does impact you just as well as it does our kids as they will be looking at you”

“I would still say that it involves you, and our kids or Michael and Isabel’s families more than me because I still don’t remember as much as I would like about back then” Beth sighed as she knew she had regained some memories, but still she had to deal with there would be so much she would never recall and yet she and Max were able to make new memories with the kids, and their families that were real and that didn’t deal with the past she couldn’t recall. “Sure, it impacts me, and our family with the girls and Christopher but I would support you all the way if you want to do it. Being public about who you are doesn’t solve everything, you know…”

“Oh, I know,” Max muttered. “But I cannot help but wondering if keeping the secret going, we allowed the conditions for Nicholas to attack. If we were honest about who we were, Grace would not have to keep what Tommy did to her secret for fear of the reaction, and we could have reported it to the authorities?”

“You know as well as I do that Grace kept quiet for more reasons than who she was… It was the easy way to brush aside what happened to her, but still, she was not ready to come to terms with it. Because of her budding feelings for Jake, and for fear of what it meant for her, and you” Beth sighed knowing that had been a chaotic time for her husband and daughter, and she thanked god every day that she was able to come back in their lives so they hadn’t had to deal with it alone.

“I know, but if hadn’t had to keep the secret because of what it might have brought public especially once we found out about the baby, then we could have reported, and then Nicholas could have wreaked havoc with Jake and Grace. We could have exposed Tommy, and we could have exposed Nicholas to the authorities when we first got wind, and instead we allowed him to attack and do far worse”

“And yet he had our dirty laundry. If we had exposed him? He then had an avalanche of information to drop and you, Michael and Isabel would have been caught in the crossfire because even if the time limits weren’t a factor for much of what you told me, still it would have caused a lot of damage to all of us” Beth asked of her husband. “And your career?”

“Nicholas might not have attacked Elizabeth if we had just been honest?” Max asked.

“You don’t know that because you know he had to it out for Michael. And to him, it was means to an end and he would have loved to expose you guys for the fun of it, and still he might have done what he did with Elizabeth because he was ruled by hatred. Sure, the original plan might have changed but given he was going with the flow and therefore it’s anyone’s guess what he would have done and, sure, it would it have saved some pain but I have no idea if we would have been saved from it really at all, because he would have found another way at you guys…”

“Yeah,” Max nodded as he knew that people like Nicholas would have found another way to get their mission accomplished, and yet still if they could have changed the landscape from where Nicholas could have strike, than who knows what they might have changed.

“Given he found other ways to get at you using Grace and Jake’s relationship to rock our family, and to drive us away” Beth asked as she thought of the way Max and Grace were driven from Roswell during their daughter’s junior year of high school. “He wanted to hurt us, and so he would have found a way. Even if we had exposed our families to the press, still he might have had more motivation to get at us?”

“I know, I know, but I guess I can’t help but wonder if it would be simpler if we didn’t have to hide?”

“As I said at the end of the day it’s up to you, and I can see how being free to express who you are will allow the younger generations freedom from the burden they currently feel to keep such a secret. Because we all can see the pressure that the burden brings in having to live under the weight of such knowledge. If they can be who they are, and they don’t have to hide, especially for the littlest of them, but also for the older kids because we both know that there is a burden in not being honest about your true self. So, yes, if you guys want to come forward than I will support you all the way, and I will not care what it does mean for me, because the safety of our family means more than perception about me, or my career…”

Max could only nod and smile and thank the heavens to be given the gift to be able to love Beth and the Liz still hidden deep inside her…


*

“What has you thinking?” Jake asked as he came downstairs after checking on the kids who were asleep in either their own room which was the case of Eva and the spare room as the case with the boys. “You have been stewing since we got home?” he asked as he had seen it as they ate their dinner and now that the kids were down for the count, he could see she was distracted.

“Everything is fine,” Grace sighed as they tried to watch television even though her mind was whirling from everything that had experienced these last days, and most of all what her latest suspicions meant to her friend.

“No, something is up,” Jake muttered because he could see something was on his wife’s mind. “Is it Elizabeth, is everything setting in and all the pain she’s suffered while we got to go on with our lives?”

“No,” Grace shook her head. “Okay, partially, but really, it is nothing.”

“Then what is it?” Jake asked as he gave his wife a kiss, and she kissed him back. “Let me help you with whatever is bothering you.”

“It’s just my brain is trying to connect something, and it’s almost there…” Grace muttered. “Maybe it’s because I have too much time on my hands until my rotation starts, and that never does me well” she laughed as she thought of how she had a knack of spinning off when she had too much time on her hands.

“No, it doesn’t,” Jake agreed.

“Fine, did you know that your sister and Finn would hook up before she vanished five years ago…” Grace blurted, and Jake looked at his wife stunned. “That they never truly broke up?”

“Of course, they did,” Jake asked as he felt rocked by the statement. “I remember. After everything went down the way it did, not long after the hospital, she broke it off because she was spinning out, and she didn’t want Finn to be there for her…” Jake murmured. “Just like she was pushing all of us away.”

“Apparently they didn’t,” Grace sighed. “I walked in on a moment between them today, and it was clear whatever the bond they had years ago didn’t vanish during her absence. Elizabeth even revealed to me they would get together every so often, “friendly ex’s” she called it” Grace muttered. “So, it makes me have to wonder?”

“Wonder what?” Jake asked because he did not know what his wife was getting at with this blast from the past conversation.

“When I arrived at your parent’s house today, and after I visited your sister, well, I couldn’t help but have a quick glance at the kids, and it made me wonder if Finn is Emily’s father and maybe even Drew’s?” Grace asked of a stunned Jake. “In terms of resemblance, I don’t really see it in Emily because I have always seen more of Elizabeth in her, and yet her hair is darker with every day, but with Drew, the similarities to Finn are starting to stick out, and the dates would match up”

“That is crazy,” Jake sputtered as she felt rocked by the insinuation “If Finn were the father then he would have been there for my sister”

“If he knew,” Grace asked. “We know Elizabeth back then, and she was being secretive, and she never gave a straight answer about anything, and we know she was heavily into drugs. She stopped while pregnant with Emily, but she was soon back at it,” she sighed as she remembered her encounter with Elizabeth shortly after her parent’s wedding, as Elizabeth had reverted back to spinning out of control. “She wasn’t letting anyone in, and most of all Finn.”

“But with Drew, she was in that hospital for like six months, and barely out of it when she disappeared,” Jake muttered as he remembered back to those days and how they were so sure that Elizabeth was going to make it through, but then she got released once she turned 18 and she was soon back to pills and other drugs only to overdose and then disappear. “I don’t know how Finn could be his father…”

“There was enough time…” Grace murmured. “If he spent any time with her while she was trying to recover in the hospital and Elizabeth indicated that she knows who the father of Emily and Drew is, and so now I am wondering if she’s beginning to realize it was Finn…”

“That is crazy,” Jake sighed but then he thought of the kids and thought of his little sister/niece in Emily… “Fuck,” he cursed as he got up and started to pace the living room as the pieces were beginning to make sense to him too and he didn’t like what he was thinking and Grace could sense something was up…

“Jake, please don’t do anything stupid,” Grace cursed that she should not have told her husband anything especially since everything was so sensitive regarding his sister. “Your reaction is why I didn’t want to tell you of my suspicions. I could be completely wrong, and yet…”

“You are often the most perceptive of the two of us, and not only because of your gifts. It is because you often pick on the smallest of things so no, you’re probably not,” Jake cursed as he paced, as his brain tried to process that new reality and then suddenly, he went for the door. “I need some time, so I’ll go for a walk…”

“Hell, you are Jake,” Grace muttered as she got up and rushed after her husband. “I know where you think you’re going, but no Jake, no, you are not going to go there and confront him. This is not about you. This about your sister and this is about those kids upstairs or at your parent’s house, and you need to let them deal with it on their own”

“No, this is about my sister,” Jake muttered as he thought of his sister. “She needs my support, and she needs someone who understands her, and what she doesn’t need is any more chaos or angst.” Jake muttered as she his brain whirled around, and he knew he needed space. “I need some space. I promise I won’t do anything rash, but I need time” he said before vanishing from the house and Grace cursed and went to the phone and started to dial.

“Damn it, Jake” she wanted to yell but did not as she cursed outside but had not realize tiny eyes were watching.


*


“Thanks for agreeing to come out to dinner,” Michael was saying as he and his wife sat at their old favorite Senor Chow as he knew that they needed time to be together and not dwell on what was going on within their family. Michael knew things were still tense, and they needed a time out so that it did not fester and build and explode like it had done years before.

“It was probably wise,” Maria acknowledged “Things are heating up again,” she allowed as she knew the tensions were full, and they needed time to decompress. “With the house full, we can’t help but fall into the routine” she sighed. “And with Elizabeth back in the picture?”

“She will be okay Maria,” Michael insisted as he could see the emotion on his wife’s face.

“I hope so,” Maria asked wary and worried that this might be the best that it could be with their daughter in the hospital and not prison. “I do know that Max is trying his hardest.”

“We will find some way to help her,” Michael declared. “We’re not going to allow Nicholas to win…”

“Hasn’t he already won in that he changed our lives forever,” Maria muttered. “It’s no longer the life we imagined a decade ago”

“No, it’s not,” Michael conceded. “But we managed to craft our lives into something that we can stand to live with, and we need to keep doing that in the future as we make sure everyone is happy and healthy. At the end of the day we are fortunate with what we have because we do have a lot, when some people don’t even get that…”

“I guess…” Maria sighed.

“Colin wants to be with Sue so maybe it’s time we accept and allow them to ability to see if they can make it work” Michael asked. “It doesn’t help either of them to think they have to sneak around and that we disapprove.”

“All I want is for him to be happy,” Maria sighed. “Growing up is so hard these days, and I don’t want to see him hurt.”

“Then maybe it’s time that they take control of their own lives. We can only take them so far, and we have learned from the past that if we try to interfere, it is often worse. To make it, well, they might need to do it on their own” Michael sighed. “Although I wish it could have been easier…”

“Since when was it ever easy for us?” Maria smiled.

“It was good for a long time,” Michael sighed with a slight smile at the memories that turned into a deeper frown. “I guess we should have known?”

Maria could only nod and curse under her breath Why did the gods give us so much, and then take it away?

“Do you want to dance?” Michael asked.

“Since when did you ever want to dance?” Maria could not help but ask and smile at the same time as a flash of old times broke through all the scars “You hated it, and only did it to please me back in high school”

“I love you” Michael sighed as he knew there could only be Maria for him. Just like Liz/Beth was it for Max, Maria was his soulmate. For a lot of his life he didn’t believe he deserved to be loved, and Maria busted through that barrier, and for so long they managed to make it seemed effortless when it was anything but, yet Nicholas was able to burn down their idealistic life and all they were left was the wreckage and trying to rebuild on the burnt land was so much harder than it had been when they were younger.

“I love you too,” Maria sighed because it was the truth, and for all the pain, there was only Michael for her as he picked up her hand, and the touch brought a rush of desire to her, and she allowed herself to feel the old times as flashes broke through, and it allowed her to enjoy being with the only man she ever truly love.

“I know you only took me back because of Elizabeth’s troubles and then Emily…” Michael sighed as he thought back to the time when he thought the bad times would take over. “When I walked out, you didn’t have to take me back, and you only did because of our daughter and granddaughter?”

“I took you back, or let you come home because I love you Michael. I never not loved you, and I wanted you to be in my life, and in my bed.” Maria sighed as she thought back to that time in their lives when their marriage was almost destroyed, and they had to fight to bring it back on track. “I only ever wanted you in bed next to me…”

“It was because of me that our family was so messed with and we lost our daughter” Michael murmured as she thought of the brutal lessons they had learned as it was the one fear, he had all the way back when he was teenagers. “I always feared that something would go wrong with us, and it just took us 18 years of marriage for that fear to come true. I am sorry Maria…”

“We lost our daughter because of a mad man, and not anything you did Michael. Yes, it did not help being who you are or who are kids are, but Nicholas struck because he hated you. No matter what happened, he was going to strike at the families. We should have been more on guard and even if we were, still we would not have seen it coming because it was out of nowhere, and we were not prepared. No one, could have been prepared for what we experienced?”

“We should have seen it,” Michael muttered.

“Even if we had, then we would have never seen that it was Nicholas who was our greatest threat. He slipped in there on us and surprised us. I love you Michael, and I love the family we created. Today, and every day of the last twenty-four years we have spent together and those years in high school. The only regrets I have is that we should have protected our kids better, but it has nothing to do with you or regretting that we took a chance on each other,” Maria said softly as she took his hand, and the softness was what she missed, and the easy bliss of being together. “I never regretted wanting you, or being with you…”

“I just wish….” Michael sighed not able to express the words. “I just wish being who I am hadn’t brought pain to us, and to you and our family.”

“Given high school wasn’t the easiest time I knew what I was getting in when I fell in love with you Michael. Yes, I wish it could have easier, and maybe sometimes wish that I took door number two, but I met you when I was fifteen and I was blown away by you, and that remains the case today for better and for worse. Yes, the bad times got dark, too dark and we both made choices we might want to do over but maybe Elizabeth’s return is a sign that we have a chance to do it right this time, and to fix where it went wrong, and to build something stronger and more durable. Being young is on her side, and history is on our side” Maria smiled as he got up and went onto the dance floor and for a moment, they were just able to be together, and enjoy being together without the stress of what could come tomorrow or next week, and just be together. “I want you in my life Michael.”

“I love you,” Michael vowed as they looked into each other’s eyes. “You made me want our family, and the love you gave me made it all possible”

“I love you too, you are my Space boy and I don’t regret that for a moment” Maria sighed as they kissed and it felt like hearts were mending and becoming stronger, and a union once frayed was knitting itself back together and their lives together, and their family now could only be stronger…


*


Jake knew his wife was right and it was his sister’s life, but he lost her from his life when she was eighteen, and truthfully it was more like when she was barely sixteen. They were so close once upon a time, and to lose that had changed him, them, and it had changed his family. He watched at it all tumble down. And despite his parent’s ultimate reconciliation. Still, it was a vastly different landscape after prom night. For all their fight as a family to make it. There was one missing piece that had existed, and it had been his sister and their loss of her for those years had changed them as people and as a family. Jake needed to know she was going to be alright. He could only pray every moment of the day that she wasn’t facing prison for life, but knew that Max would have to be magician to keep her from facing some kind of punishment and still he needed to know why things had gone so bad except for the obvious in that Nicholas played havoc with all their lives, and so he found himself driving and stewing and needing an outlet, and looking for a sign, and finally he felt he had one, and he knew where to go next….

Stopping the car, he got out and started knocking on a townhouse door. “Open up” he muttered as he started to knock.

“What is it,” came a voice from behind the doors. “It is getting late…” said the voice as he expressed surprise to see Jake. “Jake, what are you doing here?”

“I need to speak to you about my sister…” Jake sighed as he stormed past Finn as he did not wait for an invitation inside.

“Is Elizabeth okay?” Finn asked surprised as this was the one visitor he had not been expecting.

“She’s fine,” Jake muttered as he was still irritated. “Or at least she better be…” he sighed as he looked around and took in Finn’s home. “How long have you been here?”

“Since I graduated?” Finn muttered as while the visit was a surprise but could gather a guess of why Jake was here since he assumed Grace could see the signs, and had probably figured out that he and Elizabeth were not exactly strangers, and had stayed close until she vanished when she was eighteen. “Why?”

“Just curious,” Jake asked as they walked into the living room before he got his manners back. “Am I interrupting. Girlfriend or anything?”

“No,” Finn shook his head. “I am single and all I was doing was studying for an exam next week.”

“Really?” Jake asked. “Law school, right?”

“Right, and if it’s any of your business, there hasn’t been anyone special since your sister…” Finn muttered.

“I find that hard to believe that since she’s been gone five years, and barely a presence the two years before that” Jake muttered.

“What can I say, your sister made an impression” Finn murmured as he got the cold glare he knew so well from when he and Elizabeth were dating. “What did you want to talk about, or should I guess.”

“You and my sister…” Jake said bluntly.

“I figured,” Finn muttered.


*


“I am surprised you even considered telling him” Sue asked as they sat down in the living room as she drank nonalcoholic iced tea, and Grace the alcoholic version as they sat in the living room. The television was now off, and she had checked before Sue arrived and the kids were in bed, and no small ones looking up past their bedtimes. Grace needed someone to talk to.

“He got it out of me,” Grace sighed. “I didn’t want to tell him because of his exact reaction. Everything about his sister is so hypersensitive right now, for good reason and it is going to make him go off, which it did so I needed to talk. So, I didn’t know if you had gone back to your apartment in Las Cruces or stayed in town?”

“Colin is at his parent’s place, so I am staying at my parent’s place for tonight and then I’ll think about going back to the city tomorrow,” Sue sighed.

“I am getting up the courage to tell my big news to my parents.”

“Wow, gutsy” Grace smiled. “I know the feeling. It took time for me when I told my own parents when I got engaged at eighteen, and it took some adjusting since it was just me and Dad for so long before Mom came back into the picture.”

“Yeah, picture that and telling your parents you’re knocked up” Sue laughed. “They weren’t wild because Colin is younger, but now that there is a baby.”

“But your father will be happy you’re getting married,” Grace encouraged. And you are not a teenager,” she sighed as she thought of all her troubles with Jake when she was younger. “They will be happy for you.”

“I hope so,” Sue sighed. “So, about Elizabeth’s boys. Do you think it is possible Finn could be Drew’s father and even Emily’s” she thought of the kids, and she supposed she could see it in Drew but not as much in Emily?

“Given the way they interacted, well, it seems like they were more than a month or so experiment that sprung up before she was kidnapped. The sparks that were flying. They did seem to have a connection, and from the way Elizabeth made it sound…I guess the conclusion was that they had some kind of on and off relationship based on random hookups during those two years, before she finally went and disappeared”

“If they did. Why would Finn not have come forward and claim the baby when she got pregnant with Emily?” Sue asked.

“Maybe she didn’t know, or he didn’t,” Grace asked. “She was playing with fire a lot in those days, and maybe she didn’t know or if she did, she wasn’t going to be vocalizing it and Drew, well, we can’t know because she had disappeared.”

“Right,” Sue nodded as she thought back to the time after Grace left for Las Cruces. “I do remember seeing them together, and it’s not like she was coming to school that much after her kidnapping, and you had moved to Las Cruces and so no one was that shocked when she turned up pregnant because I do remember the rumors that she was becoming wilder by the day, and it wasn’t only Finn, as there were rumors of a lot of guys, and of course the drugs”

Grace sighed as she cursed the fact, she had moved to Las Cruces. She constantly wondered if she could have reeled in her friend if she had only stayed that year, but knew for her parents, the time away from the hellmouth that was Roswell caused a lot less stress and they were able to act like a couple in love without the threats to her, and Alexandra and Carrie. It was a good year to be a family, and to get used to each other. But she wanted to graduate with her friends, so she told her father that she wanted to move back to Roswell and stay with her aunt if necessary, to finish high school in Roswell and graduate with Sue and her friends. Regardless of the rumors mill, her core friends had stuck by her and didn’t think of her like what the media did when they got a hold of the pictures and then the knowledge that she and Jake were spending nights together, and the picture they painted about her father, it made it all the more urgent to move away. Max knew she would end up at the house alone and he did not want her to be in Roswell without the family, and so he and Beth decided to move the family back into the family house. She knew her parents liked it better in their new place but coming back to Roswell was home to her. Coming back also allowed her to be older and wiser, but still, she wondered if only she had stayed and if she had, then could have helped Elizabeth or was she too gone? “I wish I could have been here to help her” she murmured.

“Even if you were here, you would not have been able to Grace because I tried, but she wasn’t accepting the help. You were also too close to it. So, no one could have gotten through to her, and I suppose that was Nicholas’s plan, right?” Sue asked as she remembered that time and Elizabeth was completely closed off when she was around, and she would disappear for days and sometimes weeks. “He wanted her so closed off so he could fully take control of her”

“Any luck on the computer?” Grace asked as her hatred of Nicholas only grew.

“I am going to try tomorrow,” Sue acknowledged. “Something must be on it, right?”

“I hope so,” Grace sighed. “Something positive needs to come from all this” she murmured. “I have to ask, if Finn is the father, what does that mean?”

“Then something good can come from all this because Elizabeth will have someone who does accept her, because yeah, now that you have mentioned it. I do remember back then, and Finn was indeed devoted to her in the aftermath and once she was gone. It did seem like Finn was a different person. It shook him to have her gone, when it was clear that she was not doing one of her disappearances, and she was not coming back. So yeah, I figure he will want to support her regardless of where it ultimately ends up with them. She needs all the support she can get. And from those who are not family and want her to be the old Elizabeth. Finn might be someone who won’t have those expectations?” Sue offered. “That can only help her recover, right?”

“I hope so…”

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Parker1947
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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 15 - 06/25/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Thu Jun 25, 2020 7:08 pm

“I love your sister,” Finn declared to a surprised Jake as they both sat and shared a beer and Jake was assessing his sister’s former boyfriend. Finn knew Jake was weary of him and he supposed if the roles were reversed than he would be the same way and knew it had to shock Jake to know how close he truly had been to Elizabeth as it hadn’t sat well with him either because of how troubled Elizabeth had been and how much he had tried to help and how resistant she had been to that help, so most of the time he just let himself be a shoulder to lean on and it had become more, but then it was obvious he hadn’t been her only and there were other guys, and she wasn’t shy about it and yet to him, she was someone special and someone was unique. “Jake, to me, she was someone who was very special, and I haven’t been able to find someone who can even match her in my heart,” he sighed. “I am being honest here Jake.”

“You barely had anything when she got kidnapped?” Jake asked.

“She wanted it that way. After she came home from the hospital, it was obvious she was changed and I tried to be there for her, but you know your sister she was very distant and she was growing more so as the days went by, and then it was obvious she was using….”

“If you knew, why would you go there with her?” Jake asked.

“I wanted to be there for her, and anything we did was spur of the moment and not something we planned. She was obvious hurting, and I could see it, and I wanted to help her. She could talk to me, and yet still she kept her inner fears to herself and that fueled the drug use and you don’t know how many times I tried to help her, but she wasn’t having it.”

“No, she wasn’t,” Jake sighed. “She was breaking Mom and Dad’s heart…”

“And mine,” Finn sighed. “I knew I wasn’t the only one, and yet I was simply happy to be there for her and I wished I could have helped her more than I did. I tried to get her help, but she always refused it. You don’t know how many times I would drive her to meetings or drop her off at the hospital, and she would be gone within 24 hours.”

“When she would disappear?” Jake asked.

“Sometimes it was me trying to get her help, but other times she would genuinely disappear… and would turn up again, pissing me off with her attitude”

“She was that way for everyone,” Jake sighed. “If you knew you guys had hooked up, why didn’t you say it was yours when she turned up pregnant?”

“Because she literally told me Emily wasn’t mine,” Finn sighed. “I mean I asked her, and she told me she was sure, and then she stayed away from me and because I knew there were others, I figured she would know” he murmured as he thought of that time and how she refused to meet up with him and stayed away. “Or know enough to whether it could be mine, and then afterwards, we barely got together for months afterwards” he muttered.

“Do you think she was telling the truth?” Jake asked as he thought of Emily.

“If she knew, why would she lie?” Finn asked. “If it was mine, I would have been there for her and she knew it.”

Which is why she probably would lie Jake muttered. “Mom and Dad tried to get her to tell them who it was…”

“Truthfully, Jake, I wasn’t the only one. As much as it hurt me to know and see it, and so I could believe it” Finn asked. “We both were young, and she was so troubled. She was drowning in plain sight, and I tried to be there for her, and she wouldn’t accept my help”

“Yet you couldn’t stop?”

“Would you have stopped being with Grace if she was falling apart, and you knew she needed your help but she wasn’t willing to take it, something tells me no, you would have been there… so, that was me and your sister. She was unique, and I have never encountered someone who was anything like her” Finn sighed to himself. And the sex was incredible, and mind blowing, and it kept me coming back, or her seeking me out he mused to himself.

“I guess,” Jake sighed.

“She told me she made the right decision to give Emily up,” Finn sighed. “She knew the girl would be better off with your parents because for some reason she found it was necessary to keep her a part of the family, but she didn’t want be the parent…”

Because of the baby’s heritage Jake mused. “She stayed away a lot after that,” Jake observed. “Even when she was still here in Roswell, she just didn’t come home”

“Yeah,” Finn said. “And she would disappear longer after that, and the drug use started up again and before long she was completely out of control, to even a bigger degree than the first round, but I wanted to a be friend so when she did come back into my life…”

“You two couldn’t stay away from each other?” Jake asked.

“I know any of it was probably the last thing either of us needed at the time, emotionally in the very least, but yeah, no,” Finn nodded Hell yeah it wasn’t the wisest move but I was never able to stay away from Elizabeth, even when I knew there were others… “I did visit her in that rehab hospital and for a while it did seem like she wanted to get better and she did seem happier, and for some reason she said the demons couldn’t catch her in there…”

Damn Nicholas Jake cursed. “She slipped away when she got out,” he sighed, at the protocol of letting out patients when they turned eighteen and Finn nodded.

“I knew by then I couldn’t help her, and she seemed too far away to even try, and so if we ever did split up, that was time when I became fed up, and unfortunately, she vanished shortly afterwards, and I felt terrible, because I didn’t know what it all meant”

“Did you know she was pregnant again?” Jake asked of a stunned Finn.

“What?” Finn asked shocked.

“You didn’t know, she had two boys born while she was away from the family. The oldest is Drew, who is now 4 ½ and was three when he came into the family last year when Elizabeth resurfaced.”

“She resurfaced a year ago?” Finn asked rocked. “I was up to my neck trying to juggle law school and my mother was sick, so I was spending a lot of time at home, and so no, I didn’t know… wait, she has to more kids?”

“Yes, Drew who is 4 ½ and 18-month-old Mick, named after my father and our grandfather” Jake revealed. She would have had to be pregnant when she disappeared for that last time” Jake sighed. “A year ago, she tried to kill herself, and the boys had been taken away”

“Wait, she tried to kill herself?” Finn asked destroyed.

“Yes, and my father was called to the hospital. Hours later, she disappeared again, only to surface again the other day having killed Nicholas” Jake sighed. “My parents have been granted custody of the boys, and so they are staying with my family at the family home and Grace seeing you today with Elizabeth has made her wonder about the paternity of the oldest boy, and of course Emily. So, I had to come and ask you if you knew?”

Blown away Finn felt himself in quicksand as Jake could see that his sister’s ex was taken back at his revelation. “Are you serious. She was pregnant?” Finn murmured as he was taken back to that time. “If she was, seriously, Jake, I didn’t know because obviously, she didn’t tell me” Finn asked. “I would not have broken it off, if I had known, so, are you saying you think the oldest boy is mine?” as it rocked him,

For Jake, from what Finn had been telling him, about the circumstances of the connection he shared with his sister in the months before. Drew could not have been anyone else’s because she would have been in the hospital for too long and only out for a few weeks before she disappeared. If it was not Nicholas, then it has got to be Finn “Could be,” he said softly. “Grace says she sees a resemblance, and it is there” Jake muttered because the pieces of there, but then he looks a lot like several members of our family, so it is all mixed in there together, but his father has been a mystery, just like Emily’s, so I need to ask?”


*


“I can’t believe you asked him” Grace asked an hour later as Jake joined her in bed, as she was just about to fall asleep when she heard the door open and in walked her husband into their bedroom. The first night they had been in their bed in several days, and it felt nice, but nicer now to know her husband was home to join her “You didn’t hit him, did you?”

“Of course not,” Jake muttered with a laugh at idea, like it was something he would have done It was, it mused but I had enough restraint to just be calm. “We had a civilized talk… as much as I did want to hit him because he knew she was crying out, and he still went there, but it really does seem like he did love her, and she does mean a lot to him,” she sighed. “He says Elizabeth told him that Emily isn’t his”

“And he believed her?”

“He knew he wasn’t the only one,” Jake said as he hated knowing that his sister was not saving herself and was going through the guys. “So, how would he know for sure?”

“Yeah,” Grace sighed as she couldn’t help but think despite the hiccups that she and Jake did encounter, yet their road towards each other was so much calmer than what was there for her friend, whose life was very turbulent waters, and those waters weren’t something Elizabeth deserved, as she touched Jake’s hand. “We will make it work out for her, don’t worry…”

“I hope so, she’s been in pain for long. I can’t handle any more of it,” he sighed Something has to go right for her as he leaned down and kissed his wife. “Knowing I am coming home to you and Eva makes it all the worth it for every day, but I want that same thing for my sister. I can’t stand to think of her in jail for the rest of her life”

“We’ll figure it out,” Grace sighed as he laid in each other’s arms, and wondered what the future would hold… as they both leaned in for a kiss, and they both got carried away into the depths of their love for each other.


*


Meanwhile Finn at his house was in stunned silence as he tried to comprehend the possibilities, and he now couldn’t help but wonder because he remembered his last encounter with Elizabeth, as she was sober that day as they had found a room in the rehab facility to talk, away from the prying eyes, and then one thing led to another, and only a short time later she was released from the hospital. Then she broke his heart when it was clear she fell off the wagon, and overdosed. Once he knew she was going to be alright, at least physically. He found the courage to break it off total because mentally he knew it was too late if she did not want to take the help that everyone wanted to give her. She then disappeared only days later…

Walking to the closet, he got out a lock box he had in there and inside wasn’t a gun but two pictures, one of a tiny baby and then another of a more current picture of a little girl who was posing for her school picture. He had found ways to get the picture, and he stared down at it and knew…

Just as he always knew… Emily was his. She looked like his mother when she was a little girl…

He had taken Elizabeth’s word but knew in his heart she was either lying or she truly had not known but he had known, especially when he was going through old pictures of his mother as a baby, and as a little girl, and the resemblance to Emily was indeed striking but he did not fight it at the time when her parents wanted to raise the little girl, because he was only a teenager himself, so he did not claim the baby and knew the girl was better off in a family that wanted her…

Still he thought of her, and wondered… Now to know there might be another one…

It made him have questions.

He needed answers.

And hours later, he was trying to get those answers as he stood outside the door looking in on Elizabeth as she slept, and he opened the door and walked in.


*


“Sue’s pregnant?” Maria asked in stunned silence a few hours later as the family gathered at breakfast. She and Michael had come home stronger than ever from their dinner, with the knowledge that their love could make it through and the kids were asleep when they walked in the house as they went up to their room knowing that things were headed in the right direction, and now they woke up to this news… Jake and Grace had other plans so they couldn’t stay after dropping off Drew and Mick with their grandparents and going on their way. Jake took solace that his parents looked stronger, more at ease after their dinner together that has got to mean something, right?

And now the big news was starting to inhabit the house. “Yes,” Colin said softly after breaking the bombshell news on his parents because after talking to Jake, and knowledge that Jake and Grace knew, well, telling his parents seemed the right thing to do, and figured it was better now, than later as Belle looked greatly amused as Liam only shook his head as Belle got up and took Emily away from the discussion. She concentrated on something on her computer, Maria saw her daughter typing away instantly on her laptop and didn’t want to think about what Belle might be up to I already have too many landmine bombs to worry about that, she muttered as she saw that Drew was watching cartoons along with his little brother who was just staring at the television and so the two joined them but the almost teenager had eyes and ears trained for the escalating voices as she typed on her computer, amusing herself. “We’re getting married,” Colin announced.

“Oh god,” Maria muttered as Michael was oddly silent and Colin did not know what that meant. No one knew when it was there was father. Michael could be oddly silent, and let his wife be the strong women in the relationship or he could erupt. Colin did not know which reaction he would be getting.

“Mom, we know we’re young and it’s unexpected, but I love her, and she loves me, and we want to raise the baby together,” Colin murmured as he was expecting a fight. “She’s due after Christmas…”

“You don’t have to get married to co-parent and be there for your child” Michael said as he ended his silence and decided to go with the rational approach.

“We know that, but I love her and want her in my life,” Colin sighed. “I know I am young…”

“Yes, you are, and Sue is older…” Maria sighed.

“Seriously Mom and Dad, now that we are getting older, is the age difference really that drastic once you’re over the age of 18. It’s not like she’s a decade older than me, and she’s still in school?”

“Speaking of school, what are your plans?” Michael asked. “You do have a plan, right?”

“As I said before, the baby is due after Christmas and Sue is planning to take the winter semester off, and go back in the spring or wait until the fall depending on the course load availability…”

“And you?” Maria asked.

“I am still planning on finishing, but I’ll be working more hours at my job” Colin sighed. “I’ll move out of dorms, so you don’t have to pay for that come September and move into Sue’s apartment in Las Cruces”

“How considerate,” Maria muttered as she tried to reconcile the need for her children to settle down, and she knew it could be traced back to the fact she did the same thing when she was their age, and yet that seemed a more innocent time FBI Special Units be damned she mused.

“You and Dad were young and look at Jake and Grace…” Colin muttered.

“Your father and I had more than six months and you know very well the circumstances that existed with your brother and Grace. Are you sure you have thought of what it means?” Maria asked. “You think you love her now…” she wondered. “And bringing a baby into this life Colin means you are tied together forever and committed to that child for at least the next eighteen years, or even longer. Couldn’t you wait to see how it works longer term with Sue, as you two have only had six months.”

“I know I love her Mom,” Colin sighed. “I felt something for her longer than we have been together, when we were just friends and we want this chance to be together, and yes I know what the baby means to our lives…”

“You think you do” Michael muttered.

“You two committed to each other when Jake was born. That had to be tougher than what I am trying to do with Sue. Yes, we are young, and yes, it has only been six months, but she is the one and I want this chance, and I want you to approve. Even if you cannot be happy for us, we want your approval”

“Well, it’s your life,” Maria sighed and muttered What is it with my children? she mused as she knew she had to accept it even if she didn’t totally approve because for once she wanted her children to experience life before settling down and getting married. “I guess you’ll have to invite Sue over for dinner so we can discuss wedding plans…” she said conceded to her son’s wishes for his life.

Belle’s eyes went wide at the acceptance she heard in her mother’s voice. She had expected a bigger battle, and Michael did too as he looked at his wife and she seemed to be genuinely accepting of it…

“Thank you, Mom,” Colin smiled after he collected himself because he had just assumed it would be a big battle, and now he could see it was almost acceptance in his mother and that was like a miracle. “I promise that we’ll make you proud...”

“You already have,” Maria sighed at the thought of yet another grandchild. She did not think she felt like she should be having so many grandchildren at her age, but she wanted her children to be happy…

“I’ll go call Sue,” Colin said immediately as he rushed off as Belle approached, and Maria was wary as he assessed his daughter, who was weeks away from turning thirteen. “You, wait okay until you’re 30, will you?”

“I can’t make any promises,” Belle laughed. “But I think you can count on me to want more of my life…”

“I better,” Maria sighed as she thought of the prospect of Belle growing up as she was entering the awkward teenage years when they had already dealt with complications with the pre-teen. “Go upstairs and get dressed” she asked, and her daughter nodded and disappeared upstairs with her laptop as she left Maria to be with Michael. “Why did we have so many children?”

“To give us a run for our money,” Michael sighed. “You were pretty accepting…”

“I am trying to be understanding,” Maria sighed as she picked up her plate from the table. “Of course, this was a bombshell, but it’s their life at the end of the day. Given the circumstances, we cannot change it, and we cannot make their mistakes for them, and maybe it will work out. It worked out for us,” she smiled, and he nodded and laid a kiss on his wife. “And Jake and Grace are very happy.”

“Yes, they are…” Michael nodded.

“I am just not ready to have so many grandchildren?” Maria sighed as he she saw Drew approached. “Yes, Drew?”

“Grandma,” Drew asked as he approached his grandparents.

“Yes,” Maria sighed at the sight of the little boy. He reminded her so much of Elizabeth…

“Is it true that Mommy is back?” Drew asked as he just glanced at the newspaper that Mick was drawing on, and which was still full of lurid stories about Elizabeth, and the fact Mick was scribbling on it was okay in her books but seeing Elizabeth’s face on the front page was awkward for all involved. “If she is, can we see her?” he pleaded. “I miss her…” as Emily looked up with surprise, and both Michael and Maria now knew Emily knew.

“She’s getting the help she needs,” Maria sighed. “But when we think it’s alright, I promise…”

“Okay,” Drew nodded as he walked off…

“And you?” Michael asked of Emily who was suddenly shy…

“Is Elizabeth really back?” Emily asked because at age 6, Emily was becoming more of a brunette with each day, and she was growing taller despite her age and didn’t really look like any of them while the boys did, which made her wonder about Emily’s biological father and the fact their daughter had been tight lipped on the parentage issue and they hadn’t pushed the subject because their daughter had more issues, and they had to pick their battles.

“Yes,” Michael acknowledged “Do you want to see her?” he asked knowing Emily probably could handle but the boys couldn’t yet, and knew Emily didn’t know the sister that had been absence practically all her life, and she knew the circumstances that existed that she was being raised by her grandparents but they had adopted her, and they were her parents.

“Can I?” Emily asked of her parents.

“We’ll see if we can make it work…” Maria murmured and Michael nodded and knew she needed, and Elizabeth would also want it too…


*


“Why didn’t you tell me?” Finn asked as he stared at Elizabeth who was now awake and sitting up in her bed. She had been startled to wake up and see his eyes on her, and for a moment the coldness of the eyes reminded her of Nicholas but the worry soon came to his eyes which never had come to Nicholas and so the memories faded, and now Elizabeth was forced to reconcile the past…

“Tell you what?” Elizabeth muttered but she knew. She had tossed and turned over the very issue, and now it was being forced out into the open.

“You have more children, and in particular a son born just months after you last left town?” Finn asked.

“You didn’t ask,” Elizabeth muttered.

“Elizabeth, you know what I am asking…” Finn asked as he was forced to confront the past… “Why couldn’t you tell me…”

“I didn’t know okay when I was still around here” Elizabeth muttered things might have worked out if I had known, but then given she was thinking maybe Nicholas was the father, maybe not on the other hand. “I didn’t find out until after I left for the final time,” Elizabeth sighed as she thought of that time in her life “And the timing had become blurred” she admitted as she didn’t want to admit why the timing had become blurred, but Finn knew, and didn’t want to think about it, because he had already been forced to confront her lifestyle, and didn’t want to have to think about what the monster may have done to someone he loved.

“Why was it the last time?” Finn asked. “Why couldn’t you have come back, and have told me?”

“Nicholas decided it was time, and I couldn’t tell him no because of the deal I made with him… and then I found out I was pregnant, and I didn’t know who the father was. You weren’t the only one, and you knew that.” Elizabeth sighed, and Finn once again looked away at the mere mention of others “Nicholas was an option, so I couldn’t come back, especially not being pregnant, yet again.” she sighed. I did not want to do that to Mom and Dad? she mused to herself. I should have but instead I made a bargain with the devil, and I put my kids through hell.

“I would have helped you…” Finn admitted.

“I know you would have, which is why I couldn’t let you do it. The drugs still had me under their grip, and Nicholas was very more aggressive than usual, and I wanted to protect you and the baby” she sighed “I wanted to protect my parents. I had already given them Emily, and I did not want to put all of you through the danger if I had tried to fight Nicholas. By then, he had such a hold on me. Finn, I had made a bargain with the devil,” she sighed as she voiced her thoughts. “And I had to see it through.”

“I would have fought for you…” Finn asked. “I loved you, and you knew it.”

“I knew it, but I couldn’t allow him to hurt you. I could not love anyone, and I could not let myself be loved. The situation I put myself hurt too much, and I was protecting my family and I was protecting you…”

“I didn’t need protecting, I just needed you…”

“No, you didn’t, you loved the sex I gave you” Elizabeth muttered, and Finn’s jaw dropped. “You should admit it because it’s the truth. No man could have loved me after what Nicholas did to me,” she spat. “I wasn’t worthy of you, or my family and I would rather drown myself than put you through the pain of coming to realize that it was only sex…”

“It was never only the sex. I loved you Elizabeth for who you were underneath. The brave and strong girl who survived a horrendous ordeal, and for coming back despite it. It was never the physical…”

“It’s always the physical,” Elizabeth admitted as she got up and started to pace the room as she turned on Finn. “For guys it’s always the sex. After what I went through and the torture I was put under, no man could have loved me for me…”

“That is justification for Nicholas keeping you under his spell. I loved you. Your parents love you, and I knew you before, and I knew you after and I wanted to you because of your strength”’

“I wasn’t strong, I was weak. I broke under the torture, and I allowed the drugs take over my life. It is a dreamland if you think I was ever that strong. It was only a facade to cover what you guys want, and always want…”

“Don’t tell me what I wanted Elizabeth.” Finn spat. “And given what you were put through, anyone would have broken under that kind of pressure so don’t think you’re special or even weak in that regard. I have seen to many cases at work or even in my classes that show that to be the case. What they did to you was horrific, but you were strong to make it through and to come through it.”

“I didn’t come through it at the end of the day Finn. I broke, and I surrendered to the pain and the drugs just like Nicholas goaded me to do,” Elizabeth sighed as the memories of the taunting’s popped into her mind. “I was weak…”

“The hell you were. You lived when anyone else would have died.”

“I wanted to die; don’t you see. I never should have lived,” Elizabeth muttered. “Max shouldn’t have saved my life that day. I was done, and I wanted to die. The drugs were easing my pain and the memories that came from what I was forced to endure because I lived. “If only Max hadn’t saved my life and allowed me to die.”

“How did he do that?” Finn asked because he was not in on the big family secret, despite the uniqueness of the family dynamics which he had seen over time.

“It doesn’t matter,” Elizabeth muttered it was a reminder once again that Finn for all his ties to her, didn’t know the truth about who she was, or who her family was “I should have died, because no one can love me…”

“That is something you are telling yourself, but it is false because you are loved. How could anyone not love you…” Finn smiled.

“If you’re saying someone could love me, that is lie because no one could love me” Elizabeth spat back as she took off her robe and was naked underneath as Finn gasped. “Tell me that you could have looked at me like this and love me” she asked as she gave Finn a good look at the tattoos.

“No one could want me after being branded by another guy…”

“You keep forgetting that I loved you regardless of what he did to you back then, I saw those tattoos Elizabeth and loved you for what was underneath. The real and sensual girl you were, and I always looked past the horror he did to you…” Finn sighed. “I wanted you for who you underneath, and it wasn’t the sex. Of course, that was fantastic, but I did not only come back for the physical. I came back because you meant the world to me and when you were gone, I realized how much you meant to me. I wanted to be able to tell you that, and to show you but you wanted to put limits on us and that made me sad but I understood that you needed time, but we always came together because of the love we had for each other and nothing else. If I did not love you, I would have been out of there as soon as I knew the drugs had a hold on you…”

“You wanted the sex…” Elizabeth tried. “I gave you sex”

“I wanted you,” Finn sighed as she stood there naked and insanely beautiful despite her repeated attempts to reduce them down to only sex. “You were beautiful then, but you’re gorgeous now,” he sighed softly as he approached as picked up her hand and grasped it as she tried to take it away. “No, I am serious Elizabeth. You are insanely beautiful. The tattoos don’t change who you are underneath”

“Finn,” Elizabeth tried in vain to stop him but felt herself melting in his presence and for a moment she felt the fifteen years girl who had this incredible guy interested in, and all the pain and all the torment seemed to vanish.

“I don’t care what you’re past may be, and what you might have done or who you did?” Finn said softly as he leaned and kissed her, and she found herself responding. “I care about the woman you are, and who you are now” he sighed as they dug into each other and found themselves falling against the bed… “And who you are going to be one day?”


*


Ten minutes later they stopped themselves from going even further but rather they were stopped by a knock on the door, which was locked. Elizabeth had used her powers, and Finn didn’t understand what she had done but she felt under her spell as the knock on the door brought them back to reality and they stopped before going too far because Elizabeth knew repeating old patterns was the last thing they needed to be doing…

As she put her robe back on, and Finn put his t-shirt back on. Then there was a jiggle of the doorknob, as she cursed as she stood up. “Elizabeth, let me in” came the voice and she knew it was Max.

Before she could unlock the door, Max got through and walked in and noticed the disheveled look of Finn. “Am I interrupting something?”

“No,” Finn shook his head as Elizabeth giggled as it felt strange for Max to hear some genuine happiness in Elizabeth. “We’ll finish that discussion…”

“Wait,” Elizabeth stopped Finn as she grabbed an envelope off her dresser and handed it to him. “I wrote this last night, I wanted to give it to you the next time we talked…” she said softly as he took the envelope. “I didn’t expect it to be this morning…”

Finn nodded and left the room.

“What was that?” Max asked as she looked at Elizabeth and tried to assess her current condition.

“Trying not to repeat old patterns,” Elizabeth admitted. “I find that the shrink is big on that here…” she mused, as she looked out the door that Finn had recently vacated.

“What are you talking about?” Max asked.

“It means that Finn is Emily and Drew’s biological father” Elizabeth muttered to a shocked Max “And it also means that Finn is confirming that knowledge just about now…” she sighed because she didn’t know what telling herself and Finn the truth about the children, they shared together would mean for her, or them, or the future…

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Parker1947
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Always Tomorrow - Chapter 16 - 06/28/2020

Post by Parker1947 » Sun Jun 28, 2020 10:25 am

Finn sat in his car and read the letter as he fingered the picture he took out of the envelope. It was the one and only picture she had of just Drew himself from the year before, as she had one of the boys together, but the one she put in the envelope was just of Drew himself…

Dear Finn…

I am so sorry for screwing with you, and I wish so much could be different, which is why I am trying to make amends for a lot of what I did wrong. I know you always had suspicions, but yes, Emily is yours. The best thing I did for her was have her be raised and adopted by my parents for more reasons than you know, but I should have told you. I tried to deny it to myself because I did not want to admit you meant something and Emily was not just a mistake I made. She does not deserve me as her mother, which is why she is better off with my parents but I wanted you to know…

And there is something else… nearly five years ago on December 12th, 2024 I gave birth to a baby boy months after I left town. I named him Drew Jacob and for the longest time I did not know who his father was until he was born and then I knew… you are his father. I saw you in his eyes when he was born, and I knew it had to be you and then it took until I saw you again to come to terms with it…

I am sorry, I tried to do the best by him, and his baby brother who I had with someone else… who is not in the picture. But the best was not good enough and they took him away along with his brother, and they are currently staying with my parents. I hope one day I will be strong enough to prove to the authorities that I can be their mother, but until that day I wanted you know. Seeing you again made realized the mistakes I have made. One day I hope to make it up to you, and to them…
Love, Elizabeth


“Jesus” Finn muttered as he thought of the woman he loved, and to know they share two children changed everything and he didn’t know how to go about the path that he was now on… Trying to calm himself, he started to drive.

*

“You lied to him” Max was asking as he tried to process the latest twists in Elizabeth’s life as he turned his back while Elizabeth finished getting dressed. “About Emily, I mean?” as it should not surprise him, but it did. “Your parents didn’t know, did they?”

“If they suspected, they never told me” Elizabeth admitted. “Which is why I stayed away a lot in those days,” she reasoned. “Most of the time I was too stoned or drugged to really know but when I was sober, the reality of everything became too much and I couldn’t be there at home and see Emily and know so I tried to be out of the house as much as I could, and Nicholas helped with that…”

“You had the baby?” Max asked.

“Because of my status,” Elizabeth admitted. “I could have gotten rid of it sure which I have done since then but by the time I knew, it was too late and then maybe deep down because it was Finn, I couldn’t do it and because if I was having the baby, I couldn’t give it away if it was indeed special and so Mom and Dad were the best options available because I knew certainly by then that I couldn’t be a mother and they wanted to give a home to Emily, so I let them. But still the reality of it was too much, and it only added to my downhill spiral which Nicholas was only too happy to aid in…

“Why not tell him?” Max asked. “He was a teenager and unlikely to object to the idea of Emily being adopted by your parents?”

“I wasn’t that rational back then,” Elizabeth said as she put her sweatshirt on. “You can turn around, I am decent.”

So, Max turned around.

“Where does Drew come into the picture?” Max asked.

“I didn’t know I was pregnant until I left that last time, and by then Nicholas was an option. A remote one, but one so I could not come home even if Nicholas were going to let me out of his sight. We hooked up at the tail end of my rehab stay, and then he ended things when I slipped back into drugs and overdosed and still would not clean myself up. So, then I left. When Drew was born, I knew, but still I was out of it due to the hard childbirth I had experienced and because Nicholas wanted me to be drugged to the gills, and I thought I might have been hallucinating but time told me…”

“Who’s Mick’s father?”

“Some bodyguard of Nicholas’s that I seduced to get out, an early attempt to do what I ultimately did six months ago. I was pregnant, and I seduced the bodyguard to get some freedom, and got rid of the baby only to find out a few weeks later that the experience took, which screwed me up even more but it worked until Nicholas realized when Mick was born that he wasn’t the father. From then on, my hellish existence continued to spiral out of control. The bodyguard is now dead”

“Dead?”

“Not by me or even Nicholas. Car accident I think” Elizabeth sighed. “He actually was a good guy, working for evil”

Max nodded.

“So,” Elizabeth asked as she wanted to get away from talking about how screwed up her personal life was, and how if only she had made different choices or spoken up. “Anything on my case?”

“I have filed the papers for the annulment,” Max nodded. “We’re waiting to see if Sue finds something on the computer. But in terms of the case, we’re waiting to see what the prosecutors want to do next… but that might not be resolved until your evaluation is concluded.”

Elizabeth nodded. “Thank you for arranging for me to be here, and not in jail”

“You are better served here than in a jail cell,” Max admitted as there was a knock on the door and he saw that it was his daughter and Sue. Smiling, he opened the door. “Come in, I think Elizabeth would like the visit because I have to get going.”

“Is everything alright?” Grace asked as they walked into the room and could see she had interrupted a tense conversation as Elizabeth still looked emotional.

“I was just filling Elizabeth on the latest,” Max sighed. “As I said, I better get back to work. Call your mother because she would like to arrange dinner sometime this weekend”

“Sure, I will,” Grace nodded. “Are you missing Alexandra and Carrie?”

“More than anything. Alex got to Washington and her hotel room fine, and Carrie is in Illinois by now…”

“They are taking the long route?” Grace laughed because it did not surprise her in the least that Carrie was making it a big adventure and not rushing to New York. “But then that is Carrie…”

“Definitely,” Max laughed. “But as long as she calls home every night… she can take as long as she wants to get to New York” Max sighed. “So, I gather there is big news maybe in the family?” he asked of Sue because Michael had gotten a hold of him on the way to the hospital, and he had been shocked to hear the news.

“I guess so,” Sue nodded.

“The Congratulations, and I’m sure I’ll hear more of it when it’s official” Max smiled as he left the hospital room as Elizabeth wondered what was up as the door closed.

“Did I miss something?” Elizabeth as she looked at both of her friends who could only glance at each other and laugh.

“Colin and I are getting married,” Sue announced, and Elizabeth’s jaw dropped. “Holy Shit” she murmured. “Sorry, but that is a shock…”

“Yeah, that is everyone’s reaction,” Sue murmured.

“Wait, I thought it’s been only six months or so” Elizabeth asked as she saw Grace laughing.

“It has been, but I am pregnant…” Sue murmured. “So, we’re getting married a little ahead of schedule.”

“Gosh,” Elizabeth’s eyes went wide at the thought of her little brother as a father. Times flies. “Congratulations” she signed as she hugged her friend and meant it because she needed something good to hold her head on, and this was not about her, and she appreciated it. “We’ll be one big family,” she giggled but it turned into a frown. “That is if I am not in prison for the rest of my life.”

“We’re working on that,” Grace murmured. “So, don’t lose hope…”

*

“Can you talk?” Finn asked Jake opened the door of his house. He was on leave due to personal business since he couldn’t work the case, his grandfather figured he needed to stay away from the department to keep away from the media who were pouncing, and so he was spending the day with his daughter.

“Sure, come in” Jake said as he invited Finn in as they went into the living room and Jake picked up Eva from the play crib, as Finn noticed Eva. “Your daughter?”

“Yup, Eva Elizabeth” Jake smiled. “She’s one…”

“She looks like the perfect combination of both of you. I figured you would be at work, you’re a deputy at the department, right?”

“Right, but with everything so crazy. I was given some time off, as to not be giving favoritism to my sister’s case which is about the only thing the department is working on, right now”

“Which must be hard, your grandfather is Sheriff and his granddaughter is trying to stay out of jail?”

“Which is blurring the line,” Jake admitted. “As you probably remember back when my sister disappeared and newly returned, Grandpa was criticized about the role he has shown to family vs. the town, so he’s trying, and I am also trying to keep the media off his back”

“I saw your sister?” Finn admitted.

“I figured,” Jake sighed as he put Eva down on the floor in front of some toys, as they talked. “So…”

“She fought it of course but she finally admitted that Emily and Drew are mine,” Finn sighed, and Jake nodded.

“What are you going to do about it?” Jake asked.

“It’s not like I didn’t have suspicions about Emily, but I lied when I said I didn’t. But I never knew she was pregnant again?”

“No one did,” Jake sighed. “I am sorry for putting it on you like that, and I know you had to be in dark because I knew my sister as much as anyone back then, she wasn’t upfront about anything, and she wasn’t going to come out with that kind of news if she had known before she disappeared. So, I am sorry for laying it on you…”

“It’s alright,” Finn sighed. “I wish a lot was different back then…”

“Don’t we all,” Jake murmured because as much as he and Grace got the fairy tale ending, still too much of it was drama filled and skirting the lines and his only wish had that they could have had a normal time of it and it hadn’t gotten so haywire. “You shouldn’t worry, Drew is doing well though”

“And Emily is content, right?” Finn asked.

“Yes,” Jake nodded. “She’s happy and very well adjusted. She knows the situation and she probably does not get it as much as she could because she is only six, and yet she is very bright, and she gets the easy meaning of it. The day will come when she truly realizes what it all means”

Andrew is my father’s name, so for Elizabeth to give Drew the name…” Finn admitted of his father he lost as a teenager before he met Elizabeth. “She knew…”

Jake’s eyes went wide but nodded. “What are you going to do?”

“I wish I knew,” Finn admitted.

“All you have to do is be there for there for my sister,” Jake sighed. “She’s still has a long road to go, and there is a very big likelihood that she’s going to be remanded to trial and that means, she’s looking at a lot of time in prison…”

“The bastard deserves to be dead,” Finn said with anger filling him.

“You won’t get any fight from me, or my family” Jake nodded. “If we had our way, he would he been dead years ago, so it eats at us that he used the family to keep control of my sister by plying her with drugs.”

“She doesn’t feel loved,” Finn admitted.

“What?” Jake asked. “She’s loved, and she knows it.”

“Deep down she thinks she cannot be loved because of what Nicholas did to her, and the tattoos. He really did a number to her self-confidence…” Finn sighed. “Convinced her that no one could love because of the tattoos and scars he gave her, and the fact she feels like she broke under the weight of what they did to her…”

“Anyone would have broken,” Jake sighed. “Given the depth of what was done to her, there is no one even someone older and wiser could have made it through that” he sighed as he thought of Max’s own experience and the stories that told them that he was a changed guy after that for a long time, and to think it thousand times worse for his sister.

“She doesn’t believe it,” Finn sighed. “Which is why prison is the last thing she needs right now…”

“I know because the one thing my sister was always known was her self-confidence. She was always feisty, and willing to go to the mat for people and she got into some doozies before Nicholas was able to strike, so for her to think we don’t love her or can’t because of what she went through is ridiculous,” Jake sighed. “So, yeah prison would be the worst thing for her right now, as she needs a lot of help and cement walls and prison bars are not going to help her…”

“I tried to tell her she’s worthy,” Finn nodded. “I don’t know if she believes me…”

Jake nodded.

“She’s pretty unique, and that is what I love about her…” Finn sighed. “I want to be able to be there for her, and to help her if she’ll let me…”

Jake smiled.


*


“Any clue what the password could be?” Sue asked as they sat in the room. Elizabeth sitting with her feet under her on the bed, and Grace and Sue were on chairs. She had the laptop and she was trying to figure out how to access it. “Everything I have tried, so far nothing…”

“I can’t think of anything he told me,” Elizabeth admitted. “Most of the time he had me full of drugs, and didn’t tell me much of anything if I was sober…”

“I saw those files. I know what he had on us” Grace asked and Elizabeth nodded. “You do know most of the crimes had statute of limitations attached so there was very little he could have done to us…”

“Still we would have been mincemeat in the media, and Grandpa would have been booted out of office because he spent so much time covering up for us” Elizabeth sighed. “He knew he had me, because despite my judgment being completely screwy. I would do anything to protect my family, especially from him. So, I went along with it because despite being weak, it was my one way to knowing I could come out of this at least with some respect for myself…”

“I wish you would have come to us…” Grace asked.

“Given all the trouble you and Jake took at the time due to the perception of your relationship, well, I didn’t want to take any chances” Elizabeth asked.

“We could have weathered it, which he did at the time” Grace sighed as she remembered how it died down by the time she had moved back to Roswell.

Elizabeth nodded. “Your father is trying to get it annulled,” Elizabeth revealed. “I don’t know if it will work but it would be nice not to think of him as my husband…”

“He was never truly your husband,” Grace sighed. “One day you would find out what it really means to be married.”

“I hope so,” Elizabeth sighed as there was a knock on the door, and she muttered as she knew it was her ‘wardens’ “Yes…”

“Dr. Lee wants to see you in twenty minutes,” came a nurse who walked in.

“I am not going anywhere,” Elizabeth sighed. “She knows where to find me”

“Just telling you,” the nurse said as she left and closed the door behind them as Elizabeth turned to her friend… “So, you’re in medical school?” Elizabeth asked.

“Yup,” Grace nodded. “I have a rotation here this summer at the hospital so if you’re still here, then we’ll see each other.”

“What happened to Harvard?”

“We went,” Grace sighed. “And it was okay in the beginning but the rumors about Jake and me followed Jake to Boston and he wasn’t able to get the job he wanted, and so he stayed home until Eva was born and then we realized how much we missed Roswell and knew Eva needed to close to our families so Las Cruces wanted to poach me, so I let them…”

“That is insane…”

“Truthfully, we wondered if it was Nicholas who engineered it, because who cares what happened when we were teenagers. We were married and engaged for a lot of years before it and then suddenly just as Jake was going to get a job in Boston, the rumors resurfaced.”

“Antar could explode for all I care,” Elizabeth muttered.

“Antar’s the planet, right?” Sue asked.

“Yeah,” Grace sighed.

“Hmmm,” Sue said as she worked on the laptop, and blinked hard. “I can’t believe it, I got in…” she asked as Grace and Elizabeth leaped, but then there was a knock on the door. “Time’s up…”

“Damn it,” Elizabeth muttered.

“We’ll take this to Dad, and we’ll let you know later, okay” Grace murmured. “Maybe we’re have some luck with the material on the computer”

Elizabeth could only sigh as she watched her friends leave, as she waited for the doctor to make her appearance. She frowned when she got a message on her phone, “I don’t see you doing anything to help me,” she muttered to the phone.


*


“Thank you for letting me talk,” Finn was saying as Jake watched the man walk of his house as he held his daughter in his arms and was just about to head inside and spend some quality time with his little girl when he saw a strange car pull into the driveway, and he stopped and watched and waited for the driver to make an appearance and expecting it to be reporter, then he was all set to send them away, but he was surprised by who he saw…

Pleasantly surprised.

“Hey stranger,” Jake smiled as he recognized his ex-girlfriend Camryn Lowell who he had not seen a long time. Camryn had gone away to university in Michigan while he stayed due to the uprising in his family tree, and then he and Grace got married and moved to Boston and his ex-girlfriend had moved overseas to take a plum job in Paris working at the bureau there for a cable network.

“Looking good Guerin,” Camryn smiled as she saw Eva and smiled at the child. “So, you did good?”

“Yeah both Grace and I did,” Jake murmured as he told himself every day that he was lucky to have what he did have and knew that he shouldn’t be taking anything for granted because he saw with his sister how much life could be very different. “I thought you were still in Europe?”

“Not anymore. Up for a job in Atlanta?”

“Whoa, CNN?” Jake asked. “Impressive. Well done,” he smiled as they walked into the house. “We got the invitation to the wedding. Congratulations, I only wished you were able to come to our wedding?”

“Thanks, but at the time, I was doing a set of stories in Spain when the invitation came in otherwise, I would have come” Camryn smiled. “But I do hope you and Grace come to my wedding. Since I am currently unemployed. I am in town until the wedding. Once that happens if I do get the job. David and I will be relocating to whatever bureau they send me?”

“So, I gather Robert didn’t work out?” Jake asked

“We didn’t make it through the first year once I got to Michigan, and that was for the best as he got injured and didn’t make it to the NFL. The distance got us, and I am much happier with David as a result” Camryn smiled as she thought of her fiancé. “Just like you found Grace?”

“Yes, I did.”

“Too bad you didn’t take those exams, and therefore didn’t graduate” Camryn asked as she still felt stunned by the events of their last months of high school, and the fact Jake swerved into a very different direction than the one he was headed in… “I am surprised the school wasn’t more understanding?”

“It was the last thing on my mind back then, and the school was understanding but it came a time where I had to decide what I wanted, and studying for exams and making up missed end of semester assignments to be able to get the necessary credits, it wasn’t what I needed at that time.” Jake murmured. “I still don’t regret it” he sighed and knew he did regret in one sense, what it did to his mother as it was another dart in Nicholas’s win column.

“If you say so,” Camryn smiled as she saw Eva and then frowned. “I guess I never figured you to be a cop?”

“I had connections, and it worked out given the circumstances,” Jake admitted. “It helped my mother think of me not as some drop-out who couldn’t get a job. I do know I got lucky. Not everyone has a grandfather for a Sheriff, who looks the other way on the qualifications for the job, but I have proven myself over the years” as he had known his grandfather had stood out there on the ledge to give him a chance, and he had worked every day to prove himself, and to make sure he didn’t make his grandfather look bad.

“I am glad it has worked out for you, and for you and Grace,” Camryn smiled. “You deserve any happiness you can manage, but I came Jake because we have to talk…”

“How so?” Jake asked as it was a surprise to see his ex. “Although I do appreciate that you haven’t contributed to the sleezy coverage regarding my sister.”

“How is she?” Camryn asked as she saw the one upside of being between jobs because she knew she would have assigned the story due to her connections here in town so she was glad she had been in Paris, and away from the heat, and was now out of work.

“In a bad way, but we’re trying…” Jake sighed as he thought of his sister. “But it’s not looking like she has the greatest chance at the moment unless we engage in some fancy footwork,” he sighed. “You didn’t hear me say that”

“Gotcha,” Camryn smiled. “But from what I do know of the story and her circumstances, what was done to her was monstrous” Camryn sighed.

“Agreed,” Jake murmured.

“But we do need to talk…” Camryn sighed.

“So, you told me” Jake murmured as he put Eva down in the play pen and they settled in the living room. “What is this about Camryn? Given that we have not seen each other in years. So why come and seek me out?”

“It is simple. It is because of your family’s big secret” Camryn revealed to the shock as a Shit expression that instantly colored his face. “To put it as gentle as I can. Jake, I know what Grace can do!”

Fuck!

keepsmiling7
Roswell Fanatic
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Joined: Thu Jun 28, 2007 9:34 pm

Re: Always Tomorrow (CC, Mature) - A Reunion's Endgame - Chapter 16 - 06/28/2020

Post by keepsmiling7 » Sun Jun 28, 2020 4:30 pm

Surprise from Camryn's visit....

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