Never Underestimate Destiny (UC M/L Z/L adult) Complete

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Never Underestimate Destiny (UC M/L Z/L adult) Complete

Post by RoswellOracle » Wed Apr 08, 2009 8:53 am

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TITLE: Never Underestimate Destiny

AUTHOR: Roswell Oracle

RATING: Mature, and eventually adult

CATEGORY: M/L, Z/L, CC, UC

REPOSTING: Please ask permission before reposting. I like to know where my story is going to live.

FEEDBACK: Feel free to send e-mail feedback to the contact link. Corrections are appreciated and all questions will be answered as quickly as possible.

DISCLAIMER: Roswell, the characters and the story, are owned by Melinda Metz, Jason Katims and Fox Studios (although the way they have abused them I don't think they deserve them) and are used here purely for entertainment purposes.

Any additional characters or situations not mentioned in the show are the creation of my dementia.

CREDITS: A small amount of dialogue in this story comes directly from the show.
Quotes from Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This is a story purchased in the Support Stacie Author Auction in Sept 2008. I was among the many fanfic authors who volunteered to have their writing services auctioned off to raise money to help fund Stacie’s cancer treatments.

Alien_friend was the highest bidder. She had the base idea for the story, and we worked as a team to put it all together. Now, she is graciously allowing me to post the story and share it with everyone.

A NOTE FROM ALIEN_FRIEND: We hope you like it as much as we do. We had fun coming up with the idea.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: Thanks to my betas and friends, Ellie, Cassie and Erina and Strawbehrryshortcake who made such great suggestions for this story, and helped me work out the rough spots.

SUMMARY: What if the events around the time of the summit went a completely different way? Zan lives, and he and Ava are the ones who head to Roswell.

Everything in the show has happened up to ‘The End of the World.’ The story starts in the very last scene of that episode where Future Max and Liz are on her balcony, dancing.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Prologue


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Liz’s Balcony)
(Tuesday, October 10th)

Liz sat next to the man who in her mind she had been calling Future Max, although she was now aware that sometime in the last few days together, he had just become Max.

Her Max.

He was her Max more so even than the Max from her own time, because this Max had been married to her, had lived with her, had loved her for years.

But that future had been lost. She and the younger Max would never have that time together. They couldn’t.

The Max whose heart she’d just broken by pretending to sleep with Kyle didn’t belong to her at all. He belonged to Tess.

But with this Max beside her, she could have just a small piece of that blissful life they would have had together. It was sort of crazy, she knew, but it was all she would ever have.

A smile crossed her lips that was almost a grimace. “Could you dance with me?” she asked softly.

“What?” he said, obviously confused by her request.

“I want to have my wedding dance,” Liz said sadly.

He understood immediately and a sad smile curved his own lips. Without a word he rose, taking her hand, and gently pulled her to him, wrapping her in his strong arms.

They swayed together and Liz imagined the song, ‘I Shall Believe,’ that this Max had said they’d danced to on their wedding night.

Being held in his arms was like coming home and a genuine smile brightened her face as she looked up into his eyes.

Max twirled her around so smoothly, like he had done it a thousand times, and Liz realized he probably had. They had.

Gathering Liz in his arms again, Max smiled too. It had practically killed him to destroy her hopes and dreams, to destroy the future they could have had together. But it had to be done. It was the only way they would survive.

It seemed cruel, but it was the only way Max and Liz would be ready for what was coming. The only way they would accept the truth of what had to be done.

His eyes roamed over her, memorizing every detail he could. It would be the last time he would see her, and he wanted to take the memory with him.

Again he twirled her, noting the happy smile on her face, the motion of her silky hair as it spun out around her.

A jolt of grief and guilt surged through him. He wanted to apologize to her for ruining her life, and for shattering her dreams. But he knew he couldn’t say anything that would possibly make her understand. She would just have to make sense of it in her own time.

As Liz continued to spin, he felt himself dissolving.

It was time, he thought.

There was so much he wanted to say to her, wanted to explain, but it was better this way. He just hoped he’d done enough.

He watched her as he faded away, savoring the sight of her, and whispered his last words that he knew she’d never hear. “I love you, Liz.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 1


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Author’s Note – One week later. The episodes ‘The Harvest’ and ‘Wipeout’ happened as they did on the show.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(New York City, NY)
(Tuesday, October 17th)

Zan was nervous, edgy. He was glad there was no one to see him pace back and forth in their underground home. Waiting.

He had watched the clock all day long. Each tick seeming to take twice as long as the last until he was sure time would stop completely and the event would never come.

Again he glanced at the red, digital numbers on the small clock.

Ten seconds.

He found himself holding his breath as he continued to pace.

His eyes darted away. How could it be so hard to look at the damn clock?

Adrenaline pumped through him, and he shook his arms as he walked, balling his hands into fists. He wanted to run, to fight, to do anything to combat the ever-growing feeling of dread and excitement.

Again his eyes found the clock.

3

2

1

And even though he knew it was coming, the burst of light that emitted from the communication orb, high on a dusty shelf, scared the shit out of him, made him feel like he’d practically jumped out of his skin.

He admitted to himself that he’d had slight doubts about the information, but now he knew everything his informer had told him was the absolute truth. He didn’t even have to listen to the message to know what it said, and it was proof that his sister Lonnie and his best friend Rath were plotting with his enemies to kill him.

A feeling of numbness spread though his body as he crossed the room, reaching for the orb.

Somewhere inside he knew it was true when the informer had told him of Lonnie and Rath’s treachery, but he hadn’t wanted to believe it. They were family, the only four of their kind . . .

Well, that wasn’t true either. His informer had also told him there were four others, identical to them in fact. And now he would have to warn them of what was to come.

With a deep breath, Zan blew the dust off the orb. He had never known its purpose until the informer had told him. Their protector hadn’t mentioned that vital fact to them, only telling them it was an artifact from their home world and to keep it safe.

Using a small push of power Zan activated the orb to hear the message.

Several balls of light burst from the familiar swirl shape on the top of the silvery orb and rose spinning into the air above him. The individual lights resolved into the shape of a ‘V’ and the bottom light flared briefly before they all disappeared.

Then a solemn voice filled the room.

“This is an official invitation from the Antarian system counsel requesting the presence of the Royal Four at a peace summit.”

“After years of war and treachery we hope to put an end to the hostilities that have plagued our planets and discover a way for the Royal Four to return so we can once again live together in peace and harmony.”

“To accommodate the Royal Four, the summit will take place on Earth in the city of New York, New York and is tentatively scheduled for the day of November twenty-seventh. Please contact the counsel as soon as possible with your answer. If we don’t hear from you in an Earth week’s time, we will issue the invitation again.”

With a sigh Zan put the orb on a table. The invitation was exactly as his informer had told him, and it was a trap. Khivar had pressured influential council members to set up the summit to discredit and hopefully murder the rightful rulers.

Zan’s informer had also told him that Khivar was already in contact with Lonnie and Rath, and planned to recruit them to commit the murders, to take all the blame off Khivar.

Zan knew what he had to do. He had to get to Roswell, and hope he had time to prevent the killings.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(In the desert outside Roswell)

At the same moment the two communication orbs in the pod chamber released twin shafts of light, signaling that they received the same message. But no one was there to see it.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max couldn’t sleep.

His mind had been on overdrive for days now.

Something was really wrong.

He paced around his room as he had done every night for the last few days, thinking.

Of course, he said to himself, it had all started when he found Liz in bed with Kyle.

It was just wrong.

He’d seen it with his own eyes, but now he knew that it wasn’t real. Somehow Liz had known he was coming and set him up.

He’d been so hurt at the time that he hadn’t questioned it at first, but then the doubts had started creeping in. Even after she had told him she’d slept with Kyle in no uncertain terms, he’d had doubts, and they had only gotten more clear.

Liz wasn’t casual about sex. He knew that with every fiber of his being.

As close as he and Liz had been, they had never really gotten beyond making out and a few roaming hands. He’d felt she wasn’t ready. He’d known it. And as much as he wanted to make love with her, he’d held back, wanting even more for the timing to be right for her.

And now Liz wanted him to believe that she had given her virginity to Kyle.

It just wasn’t possible.

Not only was she not dating Kyle, but Max knew she wasn’t in love with Kyle.

She wouldn’t sleep with anyone she didn’t love. Max knew her better than that.

The thoughts churned through his head again and again, swirling together. He’d gone over this same ground in his mind so many times, and he kept coming up with the same answers. It was just wrong.

But, he reminded himself, Liz’s strange actions hadn’t really started that night he’d seen her with Kyle. They had started a few days earlier.

Liz had tried to set him up with Tess.

She had actually gone to Tess and made a plan with her.

That was also completely unlike Liz. She didn’t like Tess, didn’t trust her, and just days before had been jealous when she’d seen Max walking down the street with Tess.

It was one thing for Liz to stay away from him, but she had gone to great lengths to try and make him turn his affections from her to Tess. Yes, he realized, it was as if Liz was trying to make him dislike her, or even hate her.

Liz had come to his room and given him that awful, heartbreaking speech about wanting to be safe. About being in danger because of him.

And he’d bought the whole thing. He even wondered if she was right.

But then days later she had unresistingly risked her life for him again by going to Copper Summit.

He’d had doubts about her actions before, but on the ride to Copper Summit he couldn’t seem to stop thinking about all the inconsistencies, and his brain hadn’t stopped working since then.

Then when all the humans had disappeared from Roswell because of the Skin’s device, Max had seen the overwhelming relief and love in Liz’s eyes when she discovered he was still alive. And he’d seen the anguish and heartbreak in her face when she left him at the UFO Center to go with Maria and Kyle to destroy the device.

He thought that look would haunt him forever. It was obvious she’d wanted to say something to him.

She loved him. Of that he had no doubt. He could see it in every one of her looks, feel it every time he touched or kissed her.

And more importantly than anything else, Liz would never betray him. He should have realized it sooner, but he could see now why he hadn’t. Liz’s actions had been designed to cause him the most pain, to cut him to the bone and make him doubt her and himself. And he had.

He also knew Liz would never hurt him like that unless she was desperate, unless she saw absolutely no other way.

Yes, something was terribly wrong, and he was going to find out what was going on.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Wednesday)

Zan told Lonnie, Rath and Ava about the invitation when they had gotten home, and they were ecstatic as he knew they would be. There had been a little discussion about attending, and Zan had pretended to be excited to go. Lonnie and Rath started the celebration after they sent their RSVP, and the party lasted late into the night.

It hadn’t been easy for Zan to act like he was enjoying himself, especially since he knew that Lonnie and Rath were happy to sell him out. But he’d put a smile on his face, turned up the music and thought about his plan instead.

He’d waited until the morning to talk to Ava.

He and Ava had been raised knowing almost from the beginning that they were destined to be together. The only problem was that Zan had never loved her.

They had been an on-again off-again couple since they were children, and had become lovers about six months ago, but Zan had been feeling more discontent and empty as the time passed. He’d been pulling away from Ava emotionally for months, and in his heart he had already ended their relationship. But she was still an important part of his life and he wanted to take her with him now that he was leaving.

He sat at the table drinking coffee, waiting for her to get up, and when she came into the kitchen a little after noon, he smiled at her.

“Hey,” he greeted. “Want to grab some waffles with me?”

Ava smiled back. “Sure.”

Together they walked out of the underground tunnels and down the block.

Zan wanted to get her away from where they might be overheard before he told her what was really happening.

They ate, making small talk, and Zan could see the hope in Ava’s eyes. He hadn’t expected to see it, but he told himself he should have known. Ava loved him and he had never actually told her their relationship wasn’t working for him.

He’d been a coward, not wanting to hurt her feelings. But the current situation made it clear to him that he needed to make a clean break from everything, including his waning relationship with Ava.

But that would have to wait until later. Now he needed to insure her safety.

They finished eating, the waitress took their plates and topped their coffee, and then Zan started explaining.

“I have to tell you something,” he said softly, “and it’s going to sound a little crazy, but you’ve got to listen to me.”

Ava cocked her head to the side in obvious confusion but nodded.

“We’re in danger,” Zan told her. “You and I.”

Ava’s brows drew together. “What do you mean, Zan? In danger from who?”

“From Khivar,” he said. “This summit, it’s a trap, and he’s planning to kill us.”

Ava’s eyes widened. “How do you know?”

“An informer came to me a few days ago,” Zan explained. “He told me Khivar was putting together a summit and he would use it to draw us out and kill us.”

“Well, how do you know it’s true?” she asked. “Who was it?”

“That’s not important,” Zan assured her. “What is important is that I trust him completely and we are in danger.”

“This informer,” Ava said softly, “he told you about the summit before you got the invitation.”

Zan nodded.

“Okay,” she said, trying to make sense. “So that part was true. Your informer must be close to Khivar, but it doesn’t mean we are in danger. And why would you trust him so completely?”

Zan shook his head frustratedly. “Ava, it doesn’t matter who the informer is, but we can trust him. And he told me that Khivar was in contact with Lonnie and Rath and plans to hire them to kill me.”

“What?” Ava squeaked, shaking her head. “They wouldn’t . . . “ her voice trailed off as the blood drained from her face.

Zan watched her steadily. “You know they would.”

She didn’t speak for a moment, her eyes flicking around the room as she thought. Eventually her gaze met his and he could see the desperation and pain in them. The terrible knowledge settled into her as she accepted the truth. When she finally spoke, her voice was rough. “What are we going to do?”

“I told them we’d go to the summit to buy some time,” Zan explained. “In a few minutes we’ll go back home and pack, and tell Lonnie that we’re going to Vegas for a couple of weeks to celebrate. She won’t question it. I’ve been talking about going to Vegas for a while.”

“And then what?” Ava asked.

“We’re not really going to Vegas,” Zan said. “We’re going to get help. We’re going to Roswell.”

“Roswell?” she asked, her brows drawing together again. “Where the ship crashed? What’s in Roswell?”

Zan took a deep breath. Along with everything else his informer had told him, this last part had been the hardest to swallow. He held Ava’s gaze. “What’s in Roswell?” he said repeating her question. “The real King.”

Ava looked even more confused, and opened her mouth, but Zan held up a hand. “Our protector never told us much, and now I know why,” he said, leaning in. “But the informer told me the truth about why we were sent here, the crash, everything.”

Ava nodded, and he started the story, telling her what he had learned. “Two sets of clones were sent to Earth,” he said, “and we are just the rejects.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The bell rang and Liz gathered her books slowly, rising to go to her next class. She used to love school so much, but now she practically dreaded it.

She was so full of conflicting emotions.

Every moment she felt like she might collapse under the weight of the terrible secrets Future Max had forced upon her. The knowledge was more than any one person should have to bear.

Liz gave a few weak smiles to the people she passed as she walked through the halls. She used to be so happy, she used to look forward to the future, but now she felt like she’d never be happy again.

She loved Max so much, but it was impossible for them to be together. Just the thought that she’d never be with him again made her feel empty and hopeless.

She also felt incredible jealously for the woman who was meant to be with Max. Tess would know the happiness of being with Max, of being married to him, of having his children.

Liz felt a cold pit open inside her at the thought of Max with Tess. It just wasn’t fair.

She entered the classroom and drew-in a quick breath as she saw Max already seated at his desk. Would she always feel the rush of love and excitement when she saw him? Would it always hurt so much?

Max turned in her direction and Liz almost held her breath. He had been so cold to her and Liz braced herself, expecting him to simply look away. But instead he smiled.

Her heart leapt in her chest and she found it difficult to breathe. After a moment she gave Max a tentative smile and moved to take her seat.

Not for the first time she was glad that she sat behind him so he couldn’t see how much he was affecting her.

She let her eyes roam over his back, remembering the feel of his broad shoulders under her hands, the way the long tendrils of his silky hair slid through her fingers, the texture of the skin on his neck.

A shiver ripped through her. So easily she could remember the wonderful safety of being wrapped in his arms, the warmth of his lips pressed against hers.

With great effort she forced herself to look away from him with a sigh. Tears pricked her eyes and she quickly looked down at the book so no one would see.

Liz knew she would never love anyone like she loved Max, and she knew she would never feel complete without him.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


When Zan and Ava returned from breakfast, they had hastily packed and said their brief goodbyes to Lonnie and Rath. The duo didn’t seem surprised by their departure, and Lonnie had even winked at her brother. Zan was sure she assumed that he and Ava were going to Vegas to get married.

Zan had turned some dollar bills into hundreds and purchased an old Mustang that barely ran. He pulled it down a deserted alley and used his powers to quickly fix it up. With a few passes of his hand the rusty, dented frame was reshaped and turned a glossy black. The interior was reupholstered, the color of the fabric returned to its original richness, the engine was repaired, and the convertible top was resealed.

Within moments the car looked like new.

As a finishing touch Zan altered the license plate to the New Mexico style.

Then he and Ava had driven for hours, putting as much distance between them and New York as possible.

They had finally been forced to stop for the night just outside St. Louis, and got a cheap room. After they checked-in, they ate a late meal at a nearby diner, and then started the short walk back to the motel.

Maybe it wasn’t the best timing, but Zan felt the need to set the record straight with Ava. He didn’t want any misunderstandings, and she deserved to know how he felt.

He stopped, leaning against a tree in a little park, looking at the small woman with him. She was a good person, a good lover, a good friend.

He wished he could love her. It would make everything so simple.

“I’m glad you came with me,” he said.

Ava came to stand next to him. “Of course I came with you.”

She reached up to touch his face. “I love you, Zan. I’d go anywhere with you.”

Zan cupped her hand in his, squeezing it lightly. Sometimes he wondered if she really loved him, or just the idea of the fairytale relationships they’d been told all their lives. He held her gaze. “Ava,” he started, but she shook her head, cutting him off.

Her eyes shinned with tears, and she gave him a sad smile. “Don’t say it, Zan,” she said softly, emotion choking her.

Zan was sad, but relieved. He was glad it didn’t come as a complete surprise to her.

“You are my best friend,” he said.

She nodded. “You’re mine too,” she whispered. “I just wanted you to be more.”

He gave her a sad smile. “I’m sorry,”

Shaking her head, she smiled back. “It’s not your fault. You tried,” her voice hitched as a small gasp escaped her, “but it just wasn’t meant to be.”

She took her hand away, wrapping her arms around herself as she looked down. “You deserve someone who makes you happy.”

Zan reached out, hugging her to him. “So do you.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
Last edited by RoswellOracle on Sun Feb 16, 2014 9:42 pm, edited 50 times in total.
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt 1 4/8

Post by RoswellOracle » Tue Apr 14, 2009 12:32 pm

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 2


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Thursday, October 19)

The next day Max hurried down the hall, eager to get to the Physics class he shared with Liz.

Now that he’d figured out something was going on, he was anxious to discover what it was, and only Liz could tell him.

But Max wasn’t sure where to start with Liz.

He had been so horrible to her, accusing her of betraying them when they were in Congresswoman Whitaker’s office, and yelling at her when they had spoken in Copper Summit. And just a few days ago he hadn’t even said a word to her when she had left the UFO Center with Kyle and Maria to try and destroy the alien device.

He’d been such a jerk to not notice that she was in pain too.

Yesterday he’d seen the cautious look on her face when she’d come into their class and it had broken his heart. Liz had expected him to lash out at her, and he was devastated by it.

In order to get Liz to open up to him, he had to get her to trust him again.

He took his seat in class and waited, facing the door, for her to arrive. It seemed to take an eternity, but finally he could see her down the hallway.

She walked with her head bowed, her arms crossed, clutching her books to her chest as if they would protect her. The light of happiness and contentment was gone from her as if someone had shut off a switch inside her. And he knew it had been switched off. He had done it.

She looked completely miserable, and it was all his fault.

As she walked through the door her eyes slid to his, and once again he saw her brace for his reaction.

His chest felt heavy, but he smiled at her. “Hey, Liz,” he said softly.

For a split second he thought he saw a spark of something in her eyes as she smiled back. “Hey, Max,” she practically whispered.

The heaviness inside him lessened just a little.

Their teacher, Mr. Seligman, walked into the room just as the bell rang, drawing Max’s attention away from Liz. It was obvious to Max even in his distracted state that Mr. Seligman had something on his mind.

Instantly he began to speak.

“A black hole,” he said excitedly. “That's what's left after a star dies. And that's exactly what happened last week, my friends.”

“The spectacular, stellar, implosion of a red giant, unheard of in the history of astronomy. The first time a post main sequence star burning in its prime, suddenly and without warning, violently exploded in a supernova of a hundred million degrees and disappeared. A process that typically takes many thousands of years.”

“What could have accounted for this, remarkable loss?”

Max felt a jolt of apprehension rush through him. He had a terrible feeling that they were all in danger.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(New York, NY)

Lonnie and Rath arrived at the street corner for their meeting, looking around for their contact.

“He’s not here,” Rath grunted.

Lonnie shrugged. “We’re early.”

Rath shifted around, anxious for some action. He looked at Lonnie where she leaned against the building, waiting, and motioned to the hot dog vender a few steps away. When she shook her head he approached the stand. “Two with everything,” he said with a jerk of his head.

The vender started to make his order, and while the man was distracted, Rath’s skilled hands pocketed two bags of chips, a Snickers and a couple of cans of Coke.

Rath paid, and returned to Lonnie, taking his place beside her and handed her a Coke. He stuffed half of the first hot dog into his mouth, chewing nosily, and talked around the food. “So where is he?”

“Charming as ever I see, Rath,” the new voice said.

Rath ignored the remark about his eating habits, stuffing another large bite into his mouth. “’Bout time you showed up.”

Lonnie stepped forward. “Nicholas,” she greeted.

He smiled and turned, speaking to her. “Congratulations on getting Zan to agree to come to the summit,” he said. “I assume it wasn’t as difficult to talk him into it as you thought.”

Lonnie shrugged. “I guess I was wrong. I thought he’d be all uptight about it, but he was excited to go. I guess Zan’s as sick of living on this rock as we are.”

Nicholas glanced around as he spoke. “No chance the spiky-haired King or his leather-clad Queen are going to walk in on our little meeting, is there?”

Shaking her head, Lonnie laughed. “No way. Zan and Ava took off for Vegas right after they found out about the summit.”

“And you let them go?” Nicholas asked angrily. “He has to be at the summit.”

“Chill,” Lonnie said. “They didn’t say, but I’ll bet they went to get married and have a quickie honeymoon.” A smirk raised the corner of her mouth. “They’ll want to be a good little King and Queen, properly wed, for when we go home.”

“Awww,” Nicholas hummed, “too bad they won’t make it to the actual coronation ceremony. Khivar wants Zan dead before that.”

“Of course he does,” Lonnie agreed. “That’s the whole point of the summit.”

Nicholas raised his eyebrows, and she stepped closer to him, adjusting the collar of his shirt. “You didn’t think we were stupid enough to believe that Khivar really wants peace, did you?” she asked. “And that’s why you called this meeting. You’re going to guarantee us a trip home, because we’re going to take care of my dear brother for you in a way that no one can prove it has anything to do with Khivar.”

“And do we have a deal?” Nicholas asked, pinning her eyes.

“Zan dead, for a ride home,” Rath said, finally speaking up. “Sounds fair to me.”

“Yes,” Lonnie added softly.

“Deal,” Nicholas said, still focused on Lonnie. He let his eyes slowly move down to her breasts and back up. “Just make sure he gets to the summit in one piece. We need him there or this whole thing is off.”

“Don’t worry,” Lonnie said smoothly, smiling at him. “My brother will be there, looking all kingly so you can have your little summit. Just tell us when you’re done with him.”

“I’ll be in touch,” Nicholas said.

“Later,” Lonnie said, holding his gaze for a long time, and finally winking before she turned away.

Nicholas smiled as they walked up the street. Those two were thugs and idiots, he thought, but they were useful. And from the signals Lonnie was sending him, he was sure the association was going to be quite pleasurable as well. A dalliance with the princess was an added bonus of this whole thing.

It certainly hadn’t turned out as Khivar intended. The summit wasn’t meant for the New York clones. After all they were just the backups, in case something happened to the real set, but the backups needed to be eliminated too.

It was just a bonus that Zan could attend the summit and get his people on Antar to stop their war against Khivar. Then Khivar could take his time and concentrate all of his attention on getting the Granolith away from Max and killing him. It was a win, win situation.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The strange death of the star had been on Max’s mind all through class, so much so that he was still thinking about it when the bell rang. He gathered his books and turned for the door, but he’d been so preoccupied that he didn’t see Liz until she was next to him.

“Hey,” she greeted nervously. “Kinda weird about that star, huh? Kinda sad.”

He nodded agreeing, and also amazed that she’d been thinking about the star too. They had always been so in sync.

When he didn’t speak she continued. “It just doesn't seem that something burning so bright could just, burn out.”

Max nodded again. He was thrilled that she’d approached him, and he didn’t want to screw it up. “Yeah,” he said softly. “It doesn’t seem possible.”

“Well,” Liz said looking down, “something unusual must have happened to make it go out like that.”

Max was perfectly aware they had stopped talking about the star and Liz had just admitted that something unusual had determined her actions toward him.

He practically felt like he had to hold his breath or he might scare her away. “You’re right,” he agreed. “It would never just end like that unless something forced it to go against its nature.”

Liz met his eyes again and he swore he saw a look that was somewhere between hope and gratitude.

He smiled. She’d just proved him right. She hadn’t wanted to hurt him, but she’d obviously felt she had no other choice. He paused, wondering if he should press her for more information.

It was the first time she’d admitted, even inadvertently, that anything was wrong. But he didn’t want to put any pressure on her, or make her regret talking to him, so he decided to take it slow.

Leaning in, he lowered his voice. “There have been lots of alien-related things going on around here lately.”

He was so close that he could smell the sweet scent of her; bath products, shampoo, and the delicate fragrance that was just Liz. More than anything he wanted to touch the soft skin of her face, run his fingers through her silky hair, and press his lips to hers.

Liz nodded, her breath coming faster, her eyes never leaving his. For several long seconds they held each others’ gaze, and Max believed they were in perfect understanding.

And then she smiled, breaking the moment. “Yeah,” she agreed softly, “who knew Roswell would become the galactic hub for alien phenomena?”

Max smiled at her joke, letting her out of the intense conversation. She’d opened up to him, and if he didn’t try to force her, she’d do it again.

“Well,” he said, teasing her back, “I’m sure they’ve all heard about the great food at the Crashdown, on the alien grapevine.”

Liz’s smile widened. “There’s an alien grapevine?”

Max’s heart lightened. It was like old times, joking with Liz, being able to talk to her. It felt good to just be with her.

They started out down the hall together as he answered. “Oh sure,” he said. “You can’t believe them. Aliens gossip worse than old women.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


With a scowl, Tess watched Max and Liz from down the hall.

She really didn’t care if Max was still pursuing Liz. After all, she was his wife, his destiny, and once they returned to their planet it was the only thing that would matter.

Nasedo had taught her not to get attached to Earthly things. He had taught her to focus on the mission, and her goals.

It didn’t matter in the long run what Max did with Liz, because in the end she would be the one going back to Antar with him, and would be crowned his Queen.

But, Tess admitted, she did feel a jolt of jealously and anger. She had done everything to get his attention, including following all the instructions Liz had given her, and Max still wasn’t interested in her. He’d been nicer to her, accepted her more, and he’d even opened up to her the night she’d found him crying in the park.

She’d thought she really had a chance with him after that night.

Never had she seen anyone so devastated as Max had been when he’d told her that he’d seen Liz in bed with Kyle.

Of course Tess hadn’t thought it was a big deal. It was just sex, after all. But it was obvious Max thought Liz had betrayed him in a fundamental way.

At the time, Tess believed Max would never want Liz again, and in the next few days he’d been cruel to her, and even accused her of betraying their secrets.

Tess had been thrilled. She’d thought that finally Max would forget about the human and turn to her, like it was meant to be. And when she used her powers to save them from the Skins in the school, she’d been sure he would finally see how valuable she was to him.

But it hadn’t happened like that. Max was still keeping her at arms’ length, and here it was, not even two weeks later, and he was following Liz around like a love-sick puppy again.

Well, Tess told herself, Liz had given her good advice. When she’d stopped pressuring Max, he’d been more receptive to her, and she had made some progress with him. She would just have to bide her time and keep her eyes open for any opportunity she could use to her advantage.

It wasn’t like they were returning to Antar anytime soon. She still had time.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max knew Liz was working at the Crashdown that night, and he couldn’t stay away. He and Liz had gotten along so well at school and he was eager to keep mending their friendship. Not to mention he always wanted to be close to Liz. There was nothing that made him happier.

He took his homework and spread it out in a booth in Liz’s section, planning to stay the whole evening. And when she came into the dining room from the back, he greeted her with a smile.

Liz saw Max when she pushed open the door and her heart jumped. She had been so happy all day because Max had softened toward her, and they were getting along so well.

She returned his smile, and her whole body felt lighter as she approached his table. She felt so much better now that Max didn’t seem to hate her.

“Hey, Max,” she said. With a nod of her head she motioned to his papers, “What are you working on?”

He looked down briefly and then back up to meet her eyes. “Well, I’ve got some trig, history and of course the physics homework.”

Liz nodded. She and Max were in physics together and she hadn’t started on the assignment either.

Max’s eyes followed the curve of her neck, and watched her long dark ponytail swing around her shoulders as she glanced at his papers. She was so beautiful.

When she looked up, he met her eyes. “So what time do you get off?” he asked, trying to sound casual. “I can save the physics homework until last and we can do it together.”

She smiled, feeling more relieved than she could believe. Max actually seemed like he wanted to mend their friendship.

“That sounds great,” she said. I get off at eight, but it should be pretty slow. I bet I can get Maria to cover for me and come over earlier.”

Max was so happy. He felt like Liz had just agreed to go on a date with him.

“Okay,” he said, trying to keep the elation out of his voice.

He was so excited that Liz was trying to be friends, but he wanted more. He wanted things between them to be like they were, and he didn’t want to wait.

“Liz,” he said softly. “About what you said this afternoon.”

She looked up meeting his eyes, and he could see something close to panic. Instantly he knew he was pushing her too fast.

With a sigh he changed what he was going to say. “That star dying. I’ve been wondering about it all day, and I think you’re right. I think someone must have done something to it, and maybe it means something.”

Liz looked at him, concerned. “What do you mean?”

Max scooted forward, closer to her, and lowered his voice. “This afternoon I went over to get my paycheck from Brody, and he said that he picked up a signal.”

Liz leaned closer too. “What kind of signal?” she whispered.

“Brody said there was a signal near here, and one on the east coast, like someone was trying to make contact,” Max explained. “And it made me think that maybe somehow the star dying was connected to the signal.”

Liz nodded. “I guess it’s possible, but what can we do about it?”

“I think we should all meet at the UFO Center, tomorrow night,” Max said. “We can see what everyone thinks and go through Brody’s research and see what he’s found out.”

“Yeah,” Liz said. “That’s a good idea.”

She motioned over her shoulder to where Michael and Maria were arguing in the kitchen. “I’ll let them know about the meeting, and I can tell Alex tomorrow at school.”

“So,” Liz said, straightening up and changing the subject, “what can I get you while you study?”

“Cheeseburger and fries,” Max said.

Liz jotted it on her order pad. “And a cherry Coke,” she added.

Max smiled, and nodded. “Yeah.”

“Okay,” she said. “I’ll get this out to you in a few minutes, and I’ll join you as soon as I can.

Max watched her walking away and was filled with a feeling of warmth and contentment that he hadn’t felt in months. He and Liz were perfect for each other. Even after all the problems and heartbreak, he was more sure of that than ever.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan and Ava had driven for two days straight, barely stopping to eat and sleep, and they had made it to Roswell more quickly than Zan had thought possible.

It was late when they arrived in the small city, and he drove the black car down the dim main street. Most of the businesses were dark, closed for the day, and the only illuminations were the streetlights and the few signs still on.

Zan knew what building he was looking for, and he didn’t expect it to be open, he just wanted to mark its position so he could find it tomorrow.

His informer had told him about the Café where he would be likely to find the Roswell four, as he had started calling them in his mind.

It seemed the other clones liked to hang out at an alien-themed restaurant.

Zan thought he was prepared for it, but when he saw the large neon-trimmed space ship that appeared to have crashed into a building he was surprised. He hadn’t expected anything as elaborate.

For some reason he felt almost drawn to the place, and had the overwhelming need to get a better look.

Turning off the headlights, he pulled the car into a space across the street from the Café, and turned to Ava. “Wait here,” he ordered. “I’m just going to check it out.”

Before he could open the car door, the lights on the faux spaceship blinked off, and the whole diner was plunged into almost complete darkness.

Zan was actually glad. The lack of light made it much easier for him to get a look. He exited the car and jogged across the street, staying in the shadows as he approached the front window.

Even though most of the lights were off inside, there was enough illumination for him to see. His eyes flicked around the room, noting the huge mural on the wall depicting the ’47 crash, aliens of every description decorating the room, and the specials board featuring such items as Orion Onion Rings and Martian Meatloaf.

It was like the Disney version of the crash, and he shook his head, wondering if he should be amused or horrified.

He was about go back to the car when movement inside the café caught his attention.

A door leading into the back of the restaurant swung open, and Zan felt his breath knocked from his body.

A small, dark-haired girl walked into the room carrying a tub of dishes that she sat on the counter. She was dressed in a turquoise and silver uniform and her hair was pulled back in a ponytail that bounced behind her as she moved. He couldn’t take his eyes off her. She was beautiful and graceful like no one he had ever seen before, and instantly he felt a rush of desire.

The desire wasn’t surprising. He was a guy. But the moment he saw her, emotions rushed through him so quickly he could barely recognize one before the next one hit; happiness, excitement, hope, belonging, surprise, triumph and love.

In an instant he felt more for this unknown girl than he had ever felt for Ava. He was drawn to her, he wanted to be with her, and incredible as it was he knew he was in love.

Suddenly she turned and looked directly at him.

Zan knew it was dark enough that she couldn’t actually see him, but somehow she felt him, knew he was there.

He felt a rush of satisfaction. She didn’t even know of his existence but she was drawn to him. She was the one he’d been waiting for all his life.

But he stayed motionless. He would go slowly with her so he didn’t mess anything up.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Liz stood transfixed, staring into the darkness. An awareness shot through her and she was sure something or someone was out there even if she couldn’t see anything.

Her heart pounded in her ears and she felt her stomach flip. Max, she thought. He must be outside watching, like he used to.

They’d had a great night studying, but a few times Liz had seen him staring at her and she knew it was because of what she’d said to him about the star. Max was smart, he’d picked up on her double meaning immediately.

And maybe it had been foolish, but Max seemed to understand her completely, and she’d thought maybe it would make it easier for him. He’d been in so much pain that she wanted to do anything to help him. And as selfish as it was, she couldn’t stand him hating her when she loved him so much.

She knew he was confused. He kept asking for answers she wouldn’t give, although this afternoon she’d given him a huge hint. And now she was sure he’d have even more questions.

More than anything she wanted to go to the door and invite him inside and explain everything, but she couldn’t. He would have to keep wondering.

For long moments she stood looking into the darkness where she knew he had concealed himself. And then she turned away, and walked into the back before her tears started.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature)Pt 2 4/14

Post by RoswellOracle » Sat Apr 25, 2009 12:13 pm

~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 3


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Friday, October 20)

Zan barely slept.

He’d been up practically the entire night thinking about the unexpected events at the Crashdown Café, and trying to figure out what he should do.

After he and Ava had left the café they’d checked into a motel, and he’d lain awake, excited but cautious. He’d never been in love before.

Of course he’d thought about love. Everyone wanted to find someone they could be happy with, and he’d been told from the time he was a child that Ava was his love, his destiny.

He’d known almost from the beginning that it wasn’t true, and he had waited for the woman he could truly love.

Last night he’d found her.

He didn’t know anything about her, not even her name, but he knew it was meant to be. Some cosmic force had brought him to Roswell, and to that café where she worked so he could meet her.

He longed to discover everything about her, but he had be careful and not scare her. It was probable that she knew the other clone who looked like him, Max, and it would difficult to explain their identical appearance.

So when Zan had gotten up, he’d gone back to the café to simply observe from outside. But he was disappointed that his dark-haired girl wasn’t working.

He’d known it was unlikely since she’d closed the night before, but he hoped he might see her. He also thought she might be in school. She had appeared to be about his age, and most seventeen year olds were in school.

Zan had dropped out when he was fourteen, preferring to study and learn on his own, and he’d gotten his GED when he was fifteen. He was curious about everything and until recently he’d felt it was his duty to learn as much as possible to make himself a better leader when he eventually returned to Antar.

But now he knew he wasn’t the king.

The informer had told him that fact, along with his other revelations, and Zan knew it was as true as all the other information he’d been given.

Suddenly, a door on the side of the Crashdown opened, and his dark-haired girl emerged into the bright, morning sunlight.

Zan was surprised. He’d thought he might see her working, but he instantly took in her clothes and large book bag and knew she was heading to school.

He couldn’t figure out what she was doing at the Café, and then he had sudden thought. Did she live in the building?

She walked quickly down to the corner and turned, and Zan kept her in sight, following behind her on the other side street. He wondered if she walked to school but she went directly to a bus stop.

Zan jogged back to where he’d left the Mustang and pulled around the block, parking in the shade of an alley so he could see the bus when it came. He knew it was stupid. His dark-haired girl was going to school, and he couldn’t follow her inside, but he just needed to keep her in sight as long as possible, and he needed to see where she spent her days.

As she stood waiting, he was able to take his time looking at her. She was small, and not just short. She was a tiny person. Her long hair was loose today and cascaded down around her shoulders. Even from the distance he could tell her skin was like porcelain, and he wished he could see the color of her eyes.

She was beautiful, but that’s not why he was drawn to her. There was something unusual about her, something he’d never seen or sensed in anyone else. He wanted to get closer to her, to talk to her, and maybe he’d be able to figure it out.

And of course he wanted more than that. He wanted her eyes to look into his, he wanted to touch her, to kiss her, to hold her against him as she moaned his name. Being in love was so new to him, and the instant connection he’d felt with her was so unexpected, and he was impatient for their relationship to begin.

Without warning she looked up, starring in his direction, and it was as if her eyes met his.

Logically he knew she couldn’t really see him, but again she’d been drawn to him.

She glanced over his car, obviously not recognizing it and then her eyes started to move to the few people on the street looking for someone she knew.

At that moment the bus arrived and he watched her take one last look around before she dropped her gaze and climbed onboard with the other passengers.



~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

.
(New York, NY)

Lonnie and Rath collapsed on their bed, breathing heavily.

“Shit that was good,” Rath panted. “You are a wildcat, baby.”

Lonnie smiled. “Hope you don’t mind the scratches.”

Rath chuckled. “They’ll heal.”

“It’s nice to have the whole place to ourselves,” Lonnie said, stroking his chest. “And not have to wonder if Zan or the retard is going to walk in on us.”

“Zan,” Rath growled. “I am so freaking sick of him.”

“We’ll get rid of him soon, permanently,” Lonnie soothed. “We just have to keep him happy for a little while longer.”

“You don’t really trust Nicholas to uphold his end of the bargain, do you?” Rath said, raising up on one elbow.

“Of course not,” Lonnie assured him. “That’s why we have to get some extra leverage to make sure he does.”

“What kind of leverage?” Rath asked.

“I don’t know exactly,” Lonnie said. “But there must be something Khivar wants, something we don’t know about.”

Rath’s brow creased. “How do you figure that?”

Lonnie met his eyes. “There has to be a reason they didn’t just kill us all again. And we’re going to find out what it is.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan had followed the bus to West Roswell High School where his dark-haired girl got off, and he watched her walk into the school. It would be hours before he’d be able to see her again, assuming she was working that night.

He was about to head back to his motel when he saw something that made him stop. Pulling into the parking lot was an old Jeep, and inside was himself and his sister. Well, the other clones of himself and his sister. Max and Isabel. The true king and princess.

It was almost surreal seeing them, seeing himself as he could have been.

He watched them together, Max laughing at something Isabel said, and Zan envied them the closeness.

When they disappeared inside, he drove back to the motel, stopping to get breakfast on the way.

Ava was up and waiting for him when he arrived. “Where you been?” she said.

“I saw Max and Isabel at the high school,” he told her, handing he a coffee.

“You talk to them?” asked Ava.

“No,” Zan said, “not yet. We should go back to the Crashdown tonight and try to catch them.”

“Okay,” Ava agreed. “So what are we going to do until then?”

“Well,” Zan started, “we need to find a place to stay. We should get one that’s pretty big, and doesn’t have too many neighbors so we can practice our powers without attracting attention. We have to whip this Roswell bunch into shape, and we need a place to do it.”

Ava recoiled, looking shocked and horrified. “You want to get a house? Like real people?”

Zan chuckled. “I had something else in mind.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The bell rang and Liz gathered her things, heading to the courtyard. It was lunchtime, and even though it was a bit cold, she knew all her friends would be eating outside.

When she reached the door, she stopped, already seeing them through the glass.

Michael and Maria were arguing as usual, Isabel and Alex were talking about something in one of his books, and Tess and Kyle were laughing about something she’d said.

It was perfect, Liz thought to herself. None of them had noticed her inner tumult, her pain. They were just going on with their lives as if nothing had happened, because in their minds, nothing had. And that was just as it should be.

She envied them their uncomplicated lives, but she was glad that she’d been able to save them the pain and the worry.

But Max, she thought with a sigh, he was in pain, and no one had noticed that either. No one was helping him through this tough time, not even Tess.

Liz wished there was something she could do, but she’d already said too much to him. Anything more and she risked messing up everything she and Future Max had worked to do. But she ached for Max’s pain, suffering along with him as he tried to pick up the pieces of his shattered heart.

And as if her thoughts had summoned him, he was suddenly at her side, speaking. “Not going out to lunch,” he said softly.

“Um, yeah,” she said, giving him a weak smile. “I was just thinking.”

“Not happy thoughts,” Max said perceptively.

She looked down shaking her head and he continued. “Liz, you’ve been so miserable and I know something happened,” he said tentatively, touching her arm, “and you started to talk about it yesterday.”

Her head snapped up and he could see the fear in her eyes as she shook her head.

“Nothing happened, Max,” she said too quickly. “I wasn’t trying to say anything.”

A grim smile crossed his lips. “Okay,” he agreed, reluctantly. She wasn’t ready to talk yet, but he wasn’t going to give up.

He changed the subject. “It’s tuna casserole day,” he said with a grin. “I know it’s your favorite.”

The panic on Liz’s face instantly turned to disgust, as she made a face. “Yuck, you know I hate that stuff.”

“That’s right,” he teased. “Then we’d better hurry before it’s all they have left.”

“Okay,” she said with a nod, and they headed together to the lunch line.

Max didn’t ask her again about what was wrong, but instead talked to her about things they had learned in class and their homework. She kept up her end of the conversation but all the time she couldn’t help thinking that one person had recognized she was different, and he was the one person she’d tried the hardest to keep it from.

She sighed. It was just one more reason she and Max were perfect together, and just one more reason it was so unfair that they had to be apart.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan and Ava had looked at property most of the afternoon, and finally they’d found a place that was exactly what he wanted.

It was an old distribution warehouse of some kind. The main floor was just a big open room with a large garage-type door that rose to the ceiling, and minimal windows. A perfect space to practice powers. Upstairs there were smaller rooms that had been offices, a break room with kitchen facilities, and even a bathroom with showers.

Zan paid the deposit and rent in cash, and then he and Ava spent the rest of the afternoon and evening using their powers, and a trip to a couple of stores, to make it more livable. They each choose an office and used their powers to clean it and change the old desks and filing cabinets into beds and other furniture. They divided the single huge bathroom into two, and cleaned it and the kitchen, and by the time it was dark they were both pretty satisfied.

“It’s too bad we couldn’t bring any of our stuff,” Ava said, motioning to the sofa they had made out of a few folding chairs.

Zan grinned. “It’s not like Lonnie wouldn’t have wondered what we were doing if we started packing furniture.”

“I know,” Ava sighed. “I just miss my own bed.”

He wrapped an arm around her shoulders, giving her a hug. “I know this is hard, but it’s better than being dead, right?”

Ava laughed. “Yeah, it’s not so bad.”

“Okay,” Zan said with a jerk of his head. “Let’s go find the Roswell clones so they don’t wind up dead either.”

Together they got into the car and headed to a drive-thru to get some dinner. Then Zan drove to the main street where the Crashdown was located and he parked across from the café, so they’d have perfect view inside.

Quickly they scanned the interior, sorting through the many customers for familiar faces.

“They ain’t there,” Ava sighed after a moment. “What are we going to do?”

But Zan wasn’t concerned. He’d seen his dark-haired beauty, smoothly moving between the people with a tray of plates filled with food. “It’s early yet,” he assured Ava, never taking his eyes off his love. “They’ll show.”

He didn’t care if they had to wait all night for the clones when he could have the pleasure of sitting and watching her.

She moved from table to table, taking orders, wiping off countertops, delivering drinks. Briefly she went into the back room carrying a tub of dishes, and when she emerged she went to the window to talk to the cook.

Zan could see her motioning around while she obviously spoke loudly, berating the cook, and a grin crossed his face. She was feisty.

But his smile faded as the cook approached the window, and Zan recognized him. “Wait,” he said to Ava, pointing. “Look at the cook, it’s Rath’s clone, ummm, Michael.”

“No shit!” Ava exclaimed. “An alien working at a joke of an alien diner. How screw is that?”

Zan nodded. “Maybe that’s why they all hang out here.”

They watched until closing time, but none of the other clones showed up. Zan was wondering if they should wait and try to catch them tomorrow, or just confront Michael.

The diner was empty except for the three staff members who were cleaning up, Michael, a blonde girl, who was obviously Michael’s girlfriend, and Zan’s dark-haired girl. When they had finished in the dining room, they went into the back.

Zan didn’t want to wait, he’d had enough waiting and he started to open his door when Michael and his girlfriend came back into the dining room in their street clothes.

Great, Zan thought with a roll of his eyes, they were going on a date.

He saw the blonde girl turn and yell behind her, and watched the door from the back open again as his dark-haired girl hurried out. She was dressed in street clothes too, and the three of them were obviously going somewhere.

Apparently Ava was thinking the same thing. “Where they going?” she said, sounding annoyed.

Zan thought they would get into a car, and he was debating if he should follow them, but they walked across the street and down to another garishly neon lit building. The UFO Center.

Michael put his hand on the door, pausing, and Zan knew he was using his powers to get inside. He was shocked. The girls must know about his powers.

Zan felt his heart jump. His dark-haired girl knew about aliens and accepted them, hung out with them. It would make it much easier to approach her.

As Michael opened the door more people emerged from the dark parking lot on the side of the building, and Zan recognized Isabel and Ava’s clone Tess. Michael held the door for them, and they all went inside.

“Freaky,” Ava said softly beside him, and he knew she was talking about seeing her other self.

“What the hell?” Zan said. “They having a party?”

“Everybody but you,” Ava said. “The other you. Think he’s inside already?”

Zan shrugged. “Maybe.” He motioned to the door. “Let’s go take a look.”

Ava pulled her thin leather jacket closer around her as she exited the car. “Who knew it would be so freezing in the freaking desert.”

Zan laughed and put his arm around her, pulling her into his side as they hurried up the street. He reached to open the door and noted it was unlocked. Was someone else expected?

They walked into the UFO Center and found themselves on the top level of a staircase. Voices came from below and they looked down, seeing that Isabel, Tess, Michael and the two other girls had joined Max.

“I wonder how much those humans know,” Ava said softly.

Zan nodded. “I wonder why they decided to tell them in the first place.”

Max’s voice rose up to them. “So I think that the signals Brody tracked could be connected to the dying star somehow, and... “

Michael interrupted him. “You called us all together here for this emergency meeting to talk about a star that croaked?”

Max shook his head, and Zan could see he was trying to make him understand. “I think it could mean something. It's been haunting me.”

Michael’s girlfriend stepped forward, obviously not hearing the urgency in Max’s tone. “I cancelled my performance, Max.”

Max sighed. “I think we should be ready for the next challenge.”

“He’s right,” Zan said softly to Ava, “even if the others don’t want to believe.

Ava nodded. “They’ll find out soon enough,” she agreed. “Do you want to go tell them now?”

Zan was about to answer when the door opened behind them, and someone else came in. They both turned to see the newcomer.

A tall, thin human guy walked in, barely glancing at them. ”Hey, sorry, guys. Sorry I'm late.”

He looked at them more closely, taking in their hair and clothes with a chuckle. “I don't remember it saying anything about costumes on the invitation. But it's too early for Halloween, and way too early for Mardi Gras, so what's going on? Are we like going on the Ricki Lake show or something?“

Zan raised an eyebrow, and the human guy looked past him to the people talking below. Suddenly he was nervous and Zan knew he must have realized that he and Ava weren’t who he expected.

The human slowly stepped away from them, toward the stairs, motioning wildly. “Scratch that question,” he said. “Uh, who needs a holiday to dress up, right? Anyway...” he trailed off as he ran down the stairs.

Ava smiled. “Guess our cover has just been blown.”

Zan nodded. “Let me do the talking. We don’t want to freak them out by telling them everything at once.”

The tall human ran to the others at the bottom of the stairs, and Max spoke, not realizing his distress. “Alex, you’re late.”

Alex pointed toward the stairs, unable to speak a coherent sentence. “Uh, um, uh.”

Zan started down the stairs, calling out. “Yo.”

Ava followed him, and they joined the group of stunned clones and humans.

“Now this is freaky,” the blonde girl said.

Max stepped forward protectively, his eyes narrowed in suspicion. “Who are you?”

Zan looked around the group, noting the surprise and fear on the faces. His gaze lingered on his dark-haired girl, and he felt a rush of satisfaction that she didn’t take her eyes off of him.

Brown, he thought with a rush of pleasure, she had deep brown eyes, almost black.

He looked back at Max as he spoke, answering his question. “We’re clones, just like you.”

Isabel spoke up. “I don’t understand.”

“They’re shape-shifters,” Michael suggested.

Zan shook his head, opening his mouth to speak but his dark-haired girl spoke first.

“Eight,” she said confidently. “There were eight pods originally.”

Everyone looked at her and then back at Ava and Zan.

He smiled at her, nodding. “That’s right. But we didn’t think you’d know about us.”

Michael seemed surprised and he spoke haltingly. “Yeah, I, um, we just found out recently. But I didn't know you'd look like us.”

Max took over. “All we know is that there were eight originally. We never knew what happened to the other four.”

“They went to New York,” Ava said, speaking for the first time.

Max was shocked. “New York?”

“The Big Apple,” Zan said with a smile. “Center of the universe. Amazing pizza.”

“Um,” said his dark-haired girl, “but there's only two of you.”

Zan nodded. “There’s four of us, but the other two, Lonnie and Rath, have joined up with our enemies. That’s why we’re here. To warn you.”

Isabel gasped. “Your sister betrayed you?”

“Yeah,” Zan said sadly. “She means to kill me, and you too eventually,” he said motioning to Max.

He could see that they were accepting the information. “By the way,” he said casually, “I’m Zan, and,” he motioned to Ava, “this is Ava.”

Max made the introductions of his group, motioning to each one as he spoke the names. “I’m Max, this is Isabel, Michael, Tess, and our friends, Alex, Maria, and Liz.”

Once again Zan had an excuse for his gaze to linger on the girl he loved and he held her eyes as he gave her a smile and a dip of his head. Her name was Liz, and being this close to her he felt even more drawn to her. It was as if there was an energy between them, a connection. And he now knew besides being beautiful, she was smart and brave, and she took in all of the crazy alien stuff as if it happened every day.

And maybe it did, he said to himself. She might have known about aliens for years.

“So Zan,” Max said, “why is Lonnie trying to kill you?”

“She probably would have tried eventually anyway,” Zan admitted. “Lonnie is very ambitious. But this time she’s made a deal with Khivar.”

“What kind of deal?” Michael asked.

“Khivar has set up a summit,” Zan explained. “But it’s just a trap to lure us out. Lonnie is supposed to get me to the summit, and then kill me when it’s over.”

“Why didn’t they contact us about the summit?” Max asked. “They know where we are.”

That information surprised Zan, but he just shrugged. “They used the orbs to send the invitation,” Zan said. “And they didn’t know we had one. They didn’t mean to invite us, but we responded and you didn’t.”

“So Khivar knows there are two sets of us?” Isabel asked.

“Yeah,” Zan said. “I don’t know how, but he does. I didn’t even know until a couple of weeks ago.”

“What’s the plan then?” Michael asked Zan.

Zan nodded, glad they believed him so easily. “We fight,” he said simply. “We set a trap for them, and we fight.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt3 4/25

Post by RoswellOracle » Sat May 02, 2009 11:28 am

I am so sorry guys, I have been so remiss in thanking everyone for the great feedback. My only excuse is I’m trying to help my best friend put together a wedding in a month, so I’ve just had a lot on my mind.

But here goes. A big thank you to everyone reading and especially to those who are brave enough to leave feedback –
Flyawayraven
Orphyfets
DestinyC
Roswellian love
Jake17
Scorpio6
Natz
Yasmania
AlysLuv
Natalie36
Verdant
NotYourChick
Liz1490
Mezz
Behrstars
Cassie
Mirae01

And of course Alien_Friend, without whom, the story would not exist

Hope you enjoy the next part!


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 4


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The meeting in the UFO Center continued as Max told Zan and Ava how they had grown up among humans, and had only found their protector Nasedo a few months ago. Then he explained about the Granolith, Nasedo’s death, their run-ins with the Skins and how Tess had killed a large number of them.

Zan nodded. “Well that explains why they are suddenly asking for a summit. Khivar has lost most of his troops on Earth, so he has to do something else to draw us out.” He scratched at his beard. “But what about this Granolith? I’ve never heard of it. Why does Khivar want it? What does it do?”

“We don’t know,” Max said. “We’d never heard of it either, not until the Skins tried to get it from us.”

“Do you know where it is?” Zan asked.

“Yeah,” Max said hesitantly. “It’s in a safe place.”

Zan nodded.

“There’s the book too,” Michael said.

“Book?” Zan asked interested.

“It’s a book our protector had,” Isabel explained. “It’s in our language, but none of us know how to read it. Maybe it tells about the Granolith. If you knew…”

She trailed off as Zan shook his head. “We never learned the language either,” he said. “I guess our protectors thought we’d know it when we got our memories back from our other lives.”

“So what’s your plan?” Max asked, getting impatient. “What kind of trap do you have in mind?”

“It’s simple really,” Zan explained. “Ava and I won’t go back to New York, and eventually Lonnie will start to panic because she can’t find us. She needs a king to get into the summit, so she’ll have to come here to get you to go. When they show up, we take them out.”

Michael stepped forward eagerly. “And what about Nicholas and whatever Skins might be left?”

“I’m sure they’ll come after you eventually,” Zan said. “So we’ll be ready for them.”

“And how do we do that?” Michael demanded. “We don’t know who they are, what they look like.”

Zan raised an eyebrow. “We make sure we are in control of our powers so we’re ready for anything.”

He motioned to Ava and himself. “We’ve been trained since we were just out of the pods, so I’m sure we can show you a few things. And we got a place we can practice.”

Max nodded. “How long do we have until Lonnie misses you?”

Zan shrugged. “A month, maybe a little more if we’re lucky. Then she’ll come here looking for a replacement.”

“How does Lonnie know where we are?” asked Isabel.

“I didn’t know,” Zan said, “until you said that the Skins already knew you were here. Lonnie is definitely working with them.”

“So when do we start?” Michael asked.

“Tomorrow,” Zan and Max said together.

They looked at each other with a nod.

“We need to get in as much practice as possible,” Max said. “We need to be ready.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


When the meeting ended the nine of them walked out of the UFO museum.

“Okay,” Zan said, “you’ve got our address, so we’ll see you tomorrow.”

Max nodded.

The Roswell group stood together watching Zan and Ava walk down the street and get in their car.

When they were safely inside, Max spoke up. “So what do you think?”

Michael stepped up beside him. “I’m glad they’re here. With Nasedo gone we’ve been fumbling around, but Zan seems to know what’s going on.”

Max felt a jolt of annoyance. Michael had been criticizing his leadership for months. But, Max admitted, he was honestly glad Zan was there too. Zan knew much more about the alien situation, and he’d been trained in using his powers.

“Michael,” Isabel chided. She put a hand on Max’s shoulder. “They seem really nice. I think they can teach us a lot.”

Max watched Zan drive the black Mustang down the street until it disappeared around a corner, before he turned back to the others. He looked at Michael, Isabel, Tess, and then Liz, thinking about how they had barely escaped the Skins in Copper Summit, and then again in Roswell. They’d been so lucky, and might not have gotten away at all if it wasn’t for Courtney’s help.

“I’m glad they’re here too,” Max said. “I think we can use all the help we can get.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Saturday, October 21)

The next morning Zan awoke early. Earlier than he’d been up in a long time.

He was excited for the day to begin because he’d be seeing his Liz again.

All night he’d dreamt about her, touching her hair, looking into her deep, dark eyes, and kissing her sweet lips. He couldn’t wait until the practice session to be close to her again.

He showered and dressed and went into the kitchen and started to cook. Rarely did he bother making a meal, but today he felt like doing something special.

Humming, he fried bacon and eggs, pushed pieces of bread into the toaster and poured orange juice and hot coffee. He was just setting the table when he looked up to see Ava in the doorway, still rumpled from sleep, with an incredulous look on her face.

“You’re cooking?” she asked sounding almost horrified.

“Sure,” he answered with a grin. “Come sit down, it’s almost ready.”

Ava took a seat and continued to watch him. “I didn’t even know you could cook. And what’s the occasion? You seem,..” she trailed off, looking for the right words, “almost happy.”

Slathering butter on the toasted bread, Zan shrugged. “I don’t know. I guess I like it here.”

A small chuckle escaped Ava. “It’s so cornball, but I do too. They’re really nice,” she said referring to the group they’d met the night before. “They’re like a real family, even the humans.”

Zan nodded, placing a plate in front of her. “Yeah,” he said thoughtfully.

As they ate they discussed how to start in training the Roswell group, what equipment they needed to create, and where to set up everything.

They’d finished eating by the time they’d figured out all the details and Zan stacked the dishes on the counter, cleaning them and the rest of the kitchen with a swipe of his hand.

He went downstairs to set up while Ava got showered and dressed, and when she came down, Zan could hear the sound of a car pulling up outside.

His heart thumped loudly and he rushed to the door, opening it eagerly, hoping to see Liz.

He was disappointed when he saw only Max and Isabel in the old Jeep, but tried not to show it. Going out to greet them, he examined the Jeep.

“This is an actual army surplus Jeep,” he said knowledgeably.

Max nodded. “Yeah, the military was practically giving them away a few years ago, but it’s a pain to keep it running.”

“It sounded a little rough when you pulled up,” Zan said. “Want me to take a look?”

Max seemed surprised, but nodded.

Zan put his hand on the hood and concentrated.

Isabel came to stand beside him. “Don’t you even have to open it?”

“No,” Zan said confidently. “I can feel what’s wrong and fix it like this.”

After a moment he removed his hand. “It’s old, and still has a lot of old parts, but I cleaned out everything and fixed a small leak in the oil pan. It should run better.”

Max sat back in the driver’s seat, started it up, and it roared to life, sounding a hundred percent better. “Thanks,” he said, turning off the engine. “Can you teach me how to do that?”

“Sure,” Zan said with a nod. “There’s so much you can do with your powers, and you’ve barely even scratched the surface.”

Just then another car pulled into the lot, a small, white SUV with Tess driving, and behind her a motorcycle with Michael aboard.

Pulling off his helmet Michael called out. “Great, everyone’s here, let’s get started.”

“Hi, to you too Michael,” Isabel said, rolling her eyes.

Zan’s brow creased. “The humans aren’t coming?”

Tess stepped forward. “Why would they? This is alien business.”

Zan shrugged, trying to hide his disappointment. “Well they were at the meeting last night.”

“They’d probably be bored,” Isabel said, “since there’s nothing for them to do.”

“No,” Michael said, “Maria would be bugging us. I don’t need her hanging all over me while I’m trying to learn stuff.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


At the same time, Alex, Liz and Maria were sitting together in a booth at the Crashdown eating breakfast.

“Wow,” Alex started, “was that freaky or what, last night seeing them? I thought I was going to have a heart attack.”

Liz nodded. “I never even considered there might be two identical sets, but I guess it makes sense. A back up set in case someone gets hurt or killed.”

“But which set is real?” Maria asked.

Alex’s brow creased. “What do you mean? They’re all real.”

“Nooo,” Maria said, drawing out the word. “One set is the real royal four, and the other set are the backups. Not all of them can go back to their planet and rule.” She smiled. “It would definitely explain why Michael is such a defective if he isn’t the real one.”

Liz shook her head, “And you want the other Michael and Isabel, what’s their names, who betrayed Zan to be the real ones?”

“Oh,” Maria said disappointedly. “I guess you’re right.”

“Besides,” Liz said, lowering her voice, “our aliens have to be the real set. They have the Granolith. They wouldn’t just risk leaving that laying around.”

Alex looked at her. “No one even knows what it is.”

“It’s got to be important,” Liz said, trying to sound casual. “The Skins were ready to kill to get it.”

For a moment they sat in silence, eating.

“Well,” Maria said, “I thought they seemed nice,” she said, referring to Ava and Zan. “Ava is a lot better than the hussy. And Zan and Max,” she giggled, “seemed almost the same, except for the clothes and tattoos.”

Liz shook her head. “Zan is a lot more confident and cocky than Max, but I’m sure that’s because Zan knew who he was from day one. You can almost feel the power in him.”

Maria shared a smirk with Alex. “Someone got a crush on Zan,” she teased.

Liz’s head snapped up, genuinely surprised. “What? No. I just meant…”

Maria cut her off. “You just did a lot of observation on someone that you have no interest in.”

“Yeah, Liz,” Alex joined in. “You can ‘feel the power in him’, or is it a spark of interest?”

“No,” Liz said, rolling her eyes. “I mean, of course he’s attractive…”

“Hah!” Maria pounced on her words. “You do like him.”

“No,” Liz blushed, trying to explain. “No, I just mean he’s identical in appearance to Max, so of course I find him attractive, but…”

“And,” Alex added, “he’s got that whole bad boy thing going. I know girls love that.”

“No,” Liz started again.

“Oh yeah,” Maria said, “tattoos and piercings. It just makes you wonder where else he has them that you can’t see.”

Maria and Alex laughed, and Liz gave up trying to explain.

After a moment Alex leaned forward. “I wonder what’s going on at the training session,” he whispered.

“Me too,” Maria whined. “I wanted to go so bad.”

Liz was disappointed not to be included too, and it hurt her terribly because at one time she’d been so close to Max that he’d told her everything. But, she told herself, it’s how it was meant to be. Max, Isabel, Michael and Tess belonged with Ava and Zan. They were family, and humans had no place.

She sighed softly, picking at her food. “I’m sure they’ll tell us later.”

“So what are we supposed to do,” Maria asked heatedly, ‘while they are out there learning to save the world? Just sit here? It seems like we’re always just sitting here while they’re out doing,” she lowered her voice to a whisper, “alien things.”

“There’s nothing we can do,” Alex soothed. “We don’t have any powers.”

“Well,” Liz said, getting up, “I have to work for a couple of hours, so I’m going to get ready. You guys want to do something later?”

“Can’t,” Maria said. “Going over to Spaceboy’s.”

Liz looked hopefully at Alex.

“Sorry Liz,” he said. “Family thing.”

She nodded, gathering their plates. Suddenly she felt so alone.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max was amazed as the lesson progressed. Zan and Ava were telling them all kinds of things he’d never even thought of before. They really were beginners when it came to using powers, and Tess wasn’t much better. What had Nasedo been teaching her, anyway?

Max turned his attention back to Zan who was speaking.

“Basically everyone can do the same things, just some people are better at some things than others. Like some people sing or play basketball better,” he explained. “Usually there are one or two talents that you can do better than anyone else, and sometimes, in rare cases, someone will get a really unusual power.”

“Like what?” Michael asked.

Zan nodded. “Like I have the power to sense powers in others.”

“What does that mean?” Isabel asked.

“When I connect with someone,” Zan explained, “I can tell what their special talent is.”

“You can do that with everyone?” Tess asked.

Zan shrugged. “So far, but it’s not like I’ve been around that many other half-alien hybrids.”

Michael stepped forward, holding out his hand. “Try it on me.”

Grasping Michael’s hand, Zan barely had to sense the connection to feel it. “You have a killer blasting power.”

Michael snatched his hand away, looking it like he’d never seen it before, and mumbled. “That’s right.”

Isabel was next, offering her hand to Zan. He took it without a word and the connection sprang to life instantly. “You can go into other people’s heads,” he said, “into their dreams to see and feel what their thinking.”

Zan dropped her hand and looked at Max.

Max didn’t offer his hand, but held Zan’s eyes. “I heal, and I’ve got a shield.”

“Wow,” Ava gasped. “Never seen one. Can you show us?”

With a small push of power Max expanded his green, shimmering shield, and Zan stepped forward, putting his hand against it. He leaned his weight on it, and it held him.

“Very cool,” he said, stepping back. “How strong is it?”

Max let the shield dissolve. “I don’t know. I’ve never tested it.”

Zan nodded. “Well that’s something we’ll have check out.”

He turned to Tess and she kept her hands at her sides as she explained. “I have a mind warp. I can make people see and feel what I want them to.”

She demonstrated by making them see several copies of herself appear around them briefly before they winked out of existence.

“Awesome,” Ava said.

“What about you?” Michael demanded, speaking to Ava.

She raised an eyebrow. “I’m an empath. When I’m close to someone I can tell what they’re feeling and sometimes I hear thoughts.”

Isabel frowned. “So right now you can tell what we’re all thinking?”

“No,” Ava assured her. “I have to be close to someone, and it’s clearer if I’m touching them. But if the person is powerful, it’s like their power blocks me out. Usually I just get random words or feelings.”

“What about Lonnie and Rath?” Max asked. “What can they do?”

Zan grimaced. “Rath packs a hell of a power, energy balls that can knock you on your ass, and shock the piss out of you. I’m sure he could kill with them when he lets loose. And Lonnie can plant suggestions in your mind that are so subtle you’ll never know it wasn’t your own thought to begin with. But her power is limited too. She can plant the suggestion but she can’t make you act on it unless you are being really unguarded.”

“So how do we get started?” Michael asked.

“Well,” Zan said, “I think we should test you out and see what you can do.” He motioned to Ava, “After that the girls can work together because Ava knows a lot more about controlling mental powers. And we,” he motioned to Max and Michael, “can work on my specialty, the physical powers.”

“But you don’t have a physical power,” Isabel pointed out.

“Didn’t I say?” Zan asked. He raised his hand and a burst of power shot out. It looked like heat shimmering or ripples in a pond as it rocketed across the room and shattered the windows.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Lonnie waited in the alley, leaning against the wall. He was late, but she was usually the one to keep him waiting, so she didn’t mind.

A sound behind her made her turn and she smiled as Nicholas came strolling up the debris-strewn alley.

She knew he had a lot of power, probably more than she did, and he was dangerous, but that was part of what made the meetings exciting.

“Nicholas,” she purred.

His eyes raked over her. “Are you ready for another session, Princess?” he asked huskily.

He stopped before her, meeting her eyes. “The more I help you regain your memories, the more I remember how good it was between us.”

Lonnie smiled. She knew she would have to gain his confidence to get him to open up to her, and it was just a lucky coincidence that they’d been lovers in their last life. She was using their past to her advantage, getting him to help her recover her memories, and soon she’d have him eating out of her hand.

“I want to remember too,” she said, grasping the front of his shirt and pulling him into the abandoned building. “Show me how it used to be.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


As Liz moved around the Crashdown, taking orders, delivering food, clearing tables, she couldn’t help glancing at the clock every few minutes.

Max and the others had gone to meet with Zan and Ava hours ago, and she wondered how it was going, and when it would be over. She had no doubt that no one would be stopping by to tell her anything, and all she could do was wonder.

She’d have to wait until late in the night when Maria got home from her date with Michael to hear about it.

Once again she glanced at the clock. It was after three now, the restaurant only had two customers who were almost finished, and she was off in about twenty minutes. She wiped down the entire counter, gathering the used dishes and took them into the back.

When she pushed the door open to go into the dining room, she paused. Seated in one of the booths was Zan.

Smiling, she approached him, wondering if he would remember her. “Hey,” she greeted.

His mouth curved in a smile. “Liz,” he said, his voice almost a purr.

She felt an unexpected jolt of pleasure that he remember her name, but almost immediately it turned to apprehension. She leaned in. “Are you sure it’s safe for you to be here?” she asked softly. “How would we explain it if someone thought you were Max?”

Zan’s smile widened. They had discussed the possibility at the training session, but of course Liz hadn’t been there. “I guess we could tell them that I’m Max’s long lost brother or something. But it’s not like we’re going to hang out at your school, or go to Max’s house.”

He motioned to his tattoos and hair, winking at her. “And do you really think anyone’s going to mistake me for him?”

A nervous feeling settled in Liz’s stomach and she wasn’t sure why. “Ummm,” she hummed, letting her eyes rake over him, “Maybe not.”

She looked at the empty seat opposite him. “Are you waiting for Ava?”

“No,” Zan said smoothly. “I’m alone.”

“Okay,” she said, deciding to treat him like any other customer. “Can I get you a drink while you look at the menu? Or are you ready to order?”

He held her eyes. “I know what I want.”

Liz’s heartbeat increased and she swallowed nervously. Was he flirting with her? She didn’t know what to do, but she realized she had been silent too long.

“What’s that?” she asked breathlessly.

He looked at her for a moment more, and then smiled and cocked his head. “A burger and fries,” he said finally.

She looked down, concentrating on writing it on the pad so she didn’t have to meet his eyes. “And a cherry Coke?” she asked automatically.

He shrugged. “Sure.”

Without another word she left, turning in the order, and then got his drink. She felt uncomfortable and she wasn’t sure why. She filled a glass with ice and soda and grabbed a bottle of Tabasco to take to him.

When she placed it in front of him, he smiled again. “A girl after my own heart.”

Liz felt herself blush and hurried back to the counter, pretending to be concentrating on cleaning as her mind rushed.

She wasn’t really attracted to him, she told herself. It was just because he looked like Max, and that stupid comment Maria had made about his tattoos. Normally she wouldn’t have wondered if he had others but now she found herself doing just that.

Her eyes roamed quickly over him. Last night he’d been wearing a t-shirt with the sleeves cut off, and she’d seen three tattoos on his muscular arms. She hadn’t really looked closely at them but the one on his shoulder had caught her attention. It was the symbol of the four square.

Today he was wearing a long-sleeved shirt, but he’d pushed the material up so the tattoo on his forearm was exposed. It looked like a red circle, or maybe it was the rising sun, and it had lines through it, maybe they were supposed represent water, or wind, or possibly claw marks. She wondered briefly what it was and if it had a meaning.

Moving her gaze up, she noted a short, scruffy beard outlined his strong jaw, emphasizing the shape. His chin was pierced just below his lips, a simple stud that drew attention to his mouth, and another glint of silver was a ring in his eyebrow.

At that moment his eyes met hers, and she looked away quickly as she blushed furiously. She rubbed the counter harder, pretending to be concentrating on a spot that wasn’t there.

Of course he was good looking, she told herself, but he wasn’t her type at all. He was a bad boy, a rebel, dangerous, even if he did look really good in leather pants.

And even if she was interested in him, he was with Ava, and she was in love with Max.

Zan’s food was ready in what seemed like no time, and she took it to him, noting that the other two customers were ready to pay their bill. Liz put the plate in front of Zan with a forced smile and turned gratefully to the cash register. She was glad to have an excuse to move away from him.

The couple paid and left, and Liz moved quickly back to the counter, thinking she’d escaped.

Zan’s voice rang across the room. “Why don’t you come sit down and talk to me?”

Liz looked up, startled. “I can’t,” she said. “I’m working.”

With a smile Zan deliberately looked around the dining room. “No one’s here.” He motioned to the seat across from him. “Come on, you can always get up if someone comes in.”

Liz couldn’t help smiling. “Okay,” she relented.

Crossing the room, she sat down, and again felt the sensation of power she’d mentioned to Maria and Alex.

“So,” he started, popping a Tabasco-covered fry into his mouth, “how long have you worked here?”

“Umm,” she said nervously, “my parents own the restaurant, so pretty much my whole life.”

He nodded. “And how did you find out about all this alien stuff?”

She met his eyes. “Max didn’t tell you?”

Zan cocked his head. “I didn’t ask Max.”

“Well,” Liz said, motioning to the back of the café. “It was right over there. I was working, and, Max was sitting at that booth.” She pointed again. “And, um, someone brought in a gun, and it kinda went off, and I got shot.”

She looked down as her hand went to her stomach. “I was dying, but Max brought me back.”

“What?” Zan asked, sounding completely surprised. “He brought you back?”

Liz met his eyes. “Yeah, he risked his life to save me. He…” And then she realized how surprised Zan was. “Why? What’s wrong?”

Zan was shaking his head. “Max brought you back from the dead. You've been changed.”

Liz’s brow creased. “What do you mean by changed?”

“You’ll become like us,” he said. “You’ll get powers.”

“No,” she denied. “That can’t be right. It’s been over a year, and I haven’t…”

Zan cut her off. “So nothing has happened? No weird things you couldn’t explain?”

“No,” she said instantly, but then paused. She had the connection with Max, and she’d had gotten flashes, visions when they kissed.

Watching her closely, Zan saw her reactions. “You have noticed something.”

“Umm, maybe,” she admitted.

He smiled. “You’ll have to be trained or you could lose control and expose yourself.”

She looked down at her hands, staring at them like she’d never seen them before. “You mean come to the training sessions at your place with the others.”

Zan nodded. “You’ll need extra attention for a while until you can control your powers. You should come every day, so Ava and I can work with you separate from the others too.”

“It’s crazy,” Liz said. “I can’t…” she trailed off.

With an understanding smile, Zan reached out and touched her hand. “What about this whole thing isn’t crazy?” he asked softly. “Aliens, an intergalactic war, a cloned royal family.”

He shrugged. “You having powers is a side-effect of your healing. And it’s not so bad is it, in exchange for being alive?”

“I guess not when you put it that way,” she said.

He squeezed her hand and released it. “I think you should start tomorrow.”

She met his eyes, still reeling from the unexpected revelation. “I work until two,” she said hollowly.

“Okay,’ he said. “I’m going to run some errands tomorrow, so I’ll pick you up then.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
The world is full of stories, and from time to time,
they permit themselves to be told - Prey

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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt4 5/2

Post by RoswellOracle » Fri May 08, 2009 3:18 pm

Howdy.

Thank you everyone for the feedback.

Alien_Friend – glad you’re still digging it!
Behrstars
Natalie36
AlysLuv – Zan, who could resist!
Roswellian love
Mirae01
Destinyc – don’t count Max out yet


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 5


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan slung himself across the sofa and switched on the TV but he really didn’t see the program. His mind was too full of his time with Liz.

She’d tried to pretend like she wasn’t curious, but he’d seen her looking at him. And he’d been able to watch her as much as he wanted.

Her hair had been pulled back in a ponytail that bounced around her shoulders as she walked and exposed her delicate, kissable neck. He’d seen the way her lips parted nervously when she was searching for something to say, and how soft color had spread across her cheeks when she was embarrassed. He now knew that she had a sprinkling of freckles across her nose, and her eyes were even a darker brown than he’d thought.

Even though she’d been wearing that silly uniform, she’d somehow made it look incredibly sexy. It showed off her slim figure, pert breasts and fantastic legs. The skirt was so short that he was tempted to reach out and touch the soft skin of her thigh when she’d been standing next to him taking his order. And he couldn’t help noticing that it was only fastened together with a few snaps, making him think that one good jerk of his hands would leave it in a pool around her feet.

Shit he wanted her. He’d had the overwhelming urge to take her in his arms, push the silvery antenna off her head and kiss her senseless.

He’d been searching for reasons to spend time with her, and unexpectedly the perfect one had just fallen into his lap. He’d had no idea how she had gotten involved with the aliens, but the fact that she was developing powers made getting to know her much easier.

She would need to be trained in controlling her powers and he’d jumped at the chance to do it. He’d even bullied her into coming with him tomorrow.

A smile crossed his lips as he thought of her again.

She’d been surprised to see him, and nervous, but she’d trusted him and had opened up to him willingly.

He’d stayed over an hour, talking to her, and she had sat with him the whole time, even past when her shift ended. She had asked him about his life in New York, and how the training session that morning had gone.

Wanting to know everything, he asked her all about her life and school.

And he’d even had the chance to touch her hand.

He was almost positive that she didn’t realize he’d done it, but he could still feel the silky texture of her skin against his fingers. And it made him impatient for more.

He knew he had to take things slowly, but he couldn’t wait for their time together tomorrow.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


And while Zan was thinking about Liz, she was thinking about him, but the direction of her thoughts were completely different.

She sat in her room, near the window and looked out into the night as she slowly pulled a brush through her hair.

The meeting with Zan had been so unexpected but it left a lasting impression. She couldn’t believe she was developing powers. It’s true she’d felt different in the last year, but she’d simply figured it was normal teenage stuff, mostly. Now she was reexamining every moment since Max had healed her.

Nothing had happened for a while, and maybe it had taken time for her new powers to develop. And then there had been that whole time she couldn’t kiss Max without getting a vision. But it had stopped when they found the orb and she assumed it had somehow made her get the visions.

That had been months ago and nothing had really happened since, if you didn’t count the flash she got when Max had touched her. But Liz was pretty sure he’d somehow done that on purpose.

Not that she doubted Zan. He’d been so sure and he’d convinced her with a few words so she’d believed him completely.

It was strange how quickly she’d trusted him. Well, she said to herself, maybe it wasn’t really that strange. She knew he was only there to help, and he was so like Max she’d found herself almost instantly attracted to him.

Of course it wasn’t real. Zan looked like Max, he was kind and funny and very direct, but he really wasn’t her type. She was attracted to nice guys like Max; guys who were clean-cut and intelligent, and had a direction in life.

Zan had told her he dropped out of school and gotten a GED, and he really had no plans for the future, like college or a job. He sometimes fixed motorcycles or cars for a little money, but he’d never had a real job.

And he had tattoos. She’d never known anyone with a tattoos and facial piercings. Although she had to admit that they did look good on him. A bad boy through and through.

She shook her head. No, she wasn’t really attracted to Zan. It was just because he was like Max.

Suddenly she saw movement at the edge of the balcony and watched as someone emerged from the top of the ladder. She slid up the window, calling out. “Max, what are you doing here?”

He crouched down next to her. “I came to tell you that I’ve filled in Valenti and Kyle, and I wanted to talk to you about the training this afternoon,” he said softly. “Can I come in?”

She stepped back, motioning him inside. She had wanted to tell him what Zan had said, and she’d been thinking about calling him for hours, but for some reason she’d hesitated.

But she was so excited, and now was the perfect time. “Max,” she blurted out before he was inside, “there’s something I need to tell you too.”

He straightened up, looking at her, seeing her excitement, and his heart stopped. Was she finally going to tell him her secret? “What’s that?” he asked softly.

“Zan,” Liz started, motioning nervously with her hands, “he came here this afternoon for lunch,” she turned and started pacing, “and we got talking and I told him how you healed me.” She was looking around as she moved, her eyes unable to focus on anything. “And he said I was different now.”

Suddenly she stopped, looking directly at Max. “He said because you brought me back, I would get powers.”

Max looked stunned. “What?”

Liz nodded. “That’s what Zan said. He’s worried that I won’t be able to control them when they do come, and he wants me to work with him and Ava.”

Max raked a hand through his hair feeling so many things: surprise, confusion, excitement, regret, guilt. “Liz, I had no idea. I’m sorry, I…” he trailed off as he looked at her realizing what he was saying. He would have never let her die even if he had known there would be consequences.

“Don’t say that, Max,” she soothed. “You saved my life. I can deal with some side effects,” she said using Zan’s words.”

Max studied her face. “You’re not freaked out?”

“I was a little at first, but not now,” she said, shaking her head. A small smile lit her face. “Zan talked me through it, and I’ve had some time to think, and now it’s kind of exciting,” she admitted. “Maybe I’ll be able to help you.”

“I don’t know, Liz,” Max said apprehensively. “You’ve just found out you might have powers, and we don’t even know what they are, and you can’t control them.” He held her eyes. “I don’t want you to get hurt.”

She nodded, sitting on her bed. “I know, Max. And I’ll be careful.”

He sat next to her. He’d come because he hadn’t seen her all day and he couldn’t stay away, and now that he was so close, he wanted more.

He thought about all the things she’d said, and hadn’t said. Somewhere in the back of his mind there was a kernel of an idea that was forming but he couldn’t seem to grasp it, and then it was gone again. He pushed all the thoughts aside and concentrated on being with Liz.

“So,” he said softly. “Did Zan tell you what your special power is?”

Liz looked confused. “No, how could he do that?”

“Well,” Max explained, “I can heal, and I have a shield, and Zan can tell what someone’s powers will be.”

“Really,” she asked incredulously. “He didn’t mention it.”

“So when are you going to start training with them?” Max asked.

“Tomorrow,” she said. “Zan’s going to pick me up after my shift.”

Max felt a twinge of jealously at her mention of Zan’s name again, but pushed it aside. He just wished he had more of a reason to spend time with her.

“Well,” he said casually, “when you get back do you want to do the Physics homework together? I haven’t even started,” he told her hopefully.

She smiled. “Sure Max. Do you want to meet in the Crashdown at around five?”

Max had hoped for a less public setting but he nodded. “That sounds great.”

Smiling, Max reminded himself he was alone with her now, and all traces of her shyness seemed to have left her. She was smiling, laughing and talking animatedly just like nothing had ever happened to mar their friendship.

Her good mood was contagious and Max smiled back. “Tell me what else Zan said.”

Liz shook her head. “Later,” she promised. “I want to hear what happened at your training.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Rath was waiting for Lonnie when she came in. She had a pizza and a six-pack of Coke and she set them on the table in front of him.

“So what did Nicholas say?” Rath said grabbing a Coke. “What do they want?”

Lonnie sat beside him, opening the pizza box. “He didn’t say anything yet,” she told him. “It’s not like he’s just going to blurt out his evil plan. He’s a lot smarter than that and it will take time to get him to open up.”

Rath snorted. “That means you’ll have to spend more time with him. Are you going to sleep with the little freak too?” he said with a laugh.

Lonnie shook her head. “If he gets what he wants he’ll lose interest. I’ve got to make him think he’ll get it eventually while he opens up to me.”

She popped open a Coke and took a drink. “And he may look like a freak now, but don’t underestimate him. You don’t remember, but Nicholas is one of the greatest generals Antar has ever known.”

“So how come you suddenly remember so much,” he asked around a mouthful of pizza, “and none of the rest of us do?”

Lonnie shrugged. “I don’t know,” she lied. “Maybe it has something to do with my power.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The phone rang just as Liz was drifting off to sleep, and she struggled into a sitting position to answer it. “Hello?”

“Didn’t wake you up, did I?” Maria asked, and continued without waiting for an answer. “I just got home from Spaceboy’s.”

Liz rubbed her eyes as she lay back against the bed. “How did it go?”

Maria sighed. “Oh fine, if you call watching a hockey game a date.” She yawned, “How was work?”

Liz felt the rush of excitement again. She’d been dying to tell Maria about her burgeoning powers. “Well Zan came in…”

Maria cut her off. “What? Zan came to see you at work?”

“No,” Liz started, “he didn’t come to see me. He just came to eat.”

Maria giggled. “Are you sure he didn’t come to see you?” she said knowledgeably. “I saw the way he was looking at you at the UFO Center last night.”

Liz laughed. “What are you talking about, Maria. That is completely in your imagination. He’s with Ava. He just came by…”

Maria cut her off again. “And he is sooooo gorgeous, like Max but not so annoyingly perfect.”

“Maria,” Liz objected, but the other girl talked over her.

“I mean, dang Liz, Zan is a total bad boy from every girl’s fantasy. If I wasn’t with Michael, I’d go for him myself. Don’t try to tell me you aren’t attracted to him. And since you and Max aren’t together you are free to hook up with anyone you want.”

Liz shook her head. “Maria, there’s not going to be any hooking up. And Zan isn’t…”

“Liiiiiz,” Maria continued, “the tattoos, the hair, the leather. You’ve been alone long enough. It’s time to get back in the game.”

“Maria,” Liz said, rolling her eyes. “Even if I was interested, which I’m not, there is no way Zan is interested in me.”

“Oh come on,” Maria drawled, “being attracted to you is practically in his DNA.”

“What?” Liz asked, confused.

“Okay,” Maria explained, “Zan and Max were made from the same guy, so they are bound to have some things in common. And what is more basic than the type of person you are attracted to? Max is head over heels in love with you, he has been in love with you since he first saw you, and it makes sense that Zan would be too.”

Liz was dumbfounded, shaking her head, even though Maria couldn’t see.

Maria continued. “I saw the way Zan was looking at you. And don’t say I don’t know what I’m talking about. I’ve been watching Max look at you that same way for years. And,” she added, “Zan definitely wants you if he took the trouble to track you down.”

“Maria,” Liz objected, “you know you’re delusional, right?”

“So what did he say?” Maria asked with a laugh.

Liz smiled. “Well, that’s a long story.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
Last edited by RoswellOracle on Fri May 15, 2009 11:15 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt5 5/8

Post by RoswellOracle » Fri May 15, 2009 11:32 am

Thanks for the feedback guys! Glad you are enjoying.

Berhstars
Alien_Friend
DestinyC
AlysLuv
Abbs007
Roswellian love


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 6


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Sunday, October 22)

Liz sat at the counter of the Crashdown bent over a book. She had gotten off her shift early, but she didn’t have Zan’s phone number to call and tell him. Also he’d told her he was he was running some errands and she didn’t know if he would be finished. So she’d used the extra time to do some homework.

Glancing at the clock, she noted there were fifteen minutes before Zan would be there and she looked back at the page she was reading. The assignment was to write a ten-page paper on one of Shakespeare’s plays, and of course she’d chosen Romeo and Juliet.

Even though she’d told Max she no longer considered it to be romantic, she’d lied. The beautiful language and obvious feelings the couple shared was impossible not to love. And Liz couldn’t help wishing every time she read it that they would surprise her and have a happy ending.

“But soft,” said a deep voice behind her, “what light through yonder window breaks?”

She turned to see Zan, and he held her eyes, continuing to quote. “It is the East, and Juliet is the sun. Arise fair sun and kill the envious moon who is already sick and pale with grief that thou, her maid, art far more fair than she.”

Liz was more surprised than she could say, and she actually felt herself blushing. “You know Shakespeare,” she said trying to keep the shock out of her voice.

He nodded. “I love Shakespeare,” he said.

Liz shook her head as her perception of him as an uneducated tough guy was slipping away. “I mean you don’t look like the typical academic, and I just assumed since you dropped out of school that you wouldn’t…”

He cut her off with a smile. “You assumed I was stupid.”

“No,” she instantly denied. “Not stupid, just not interested in stuff like Shakespeare.”

Zan leaned on the counter next to her. “I was bored with school, but I love to learn and read.”

She nodded. “Me too.”

His smile widened and he cocked his head toward the door. “Let’s get going then. There’s no telling what we might learn.”

Liz stowed her stuff behind the counter, grabbed a jacket, and followed Zan out to his car. He drove them several blocks to a more industrial part of town and pulled into the parking lot of an old warehouse.

Zan opened the door of the building with his powers and let Liz enter before him. She looked around eagerly, taking in the professional-looking training course. There were targets, practice dummies shaped like real people, all kinds of small items that she assumed were for throwing, and other things she had no idea what they were for.

As Liz looked around the room, Zan looked at her. She was so beautiful. Her long, dark hair was loose and looked like silk where it fell around her shoulders. His fingers itched to reach out and touch it to see if it was as soft as it appeared.

He’d surprised her with the Shakespeare quotation, and he’d seen in her eyes that her perception of him had significantly altered because of it.

It amused him to realize she had already written him off. He’d never had trouble attracting women, but Liz was different. She wasn’t just looking for a pretty face or a good time, she wanted substance, a real relationship, and that’s exactly what he wanted too.

He would make sure she changed her mind about him. Even if she didn’t realize it yet, he was what she was looking for.

And as much as he was ready to go forward with her, he had to take it slow. He didn’t want to risk going backward when he’d already made so much progress.

She turned back to him. “You know, I’ve been wondering,” she said, “how did you discover Lonnie was going to betray you?”

Her words caught him off guard. Obviously her mind had been going in a completely different direction. “Well,” he said cautiously, “that is an interesting story. An informer came to me a couple of weeks ago and told me the whole thing, about Lonnie and Rath and the summit.”

Liz hadn’t expected an answer like that at all. She thought that he’d seen or overheard something Lonnie or Rath had said or done. “An informer?” she said incredulously. “Who? An alien obviously, a shapeshifter or a rebel Skin like Courtney?”

Zan shook his head. “I can’t say. It wouldn’t be safe for him.”

“But how do you know you can trust him?” she asked. “Maybe he’s just trying to divide your group.”

“I trust him,” Zan assured her, “almost as much as I trust myself. And there is no doubt that everything he said was true.”

“But he knew about the summit,” Liz said, “so it must be someone close to Khivar.”

Zan smiled. “It won’t do any good guessing, I’m not going to tell you.”

“But,” Liz persisted, “if he can tell us anything else…” she stopped as Zan cut her off.

“He already told me everything he can,” Zan said, “and he can’t, um, risk contacting me again.”

Liz nodded. As frustrating as it was not to know, she could see Zan wasn’t going to tell her anything else.

“So why haven’t you told Max and the others?” she asked.

Zan shrugged. “They never asked, and I thought it was better to keep it to myself.”

“But you told me,” Liz said.

“Yeah,” Zan rumbled, holding her eyes, “but I know you won’t tell anyone.”

Liz felt her heart beat speed up. “How do you know?” she asked, suddenly breathless.

He took a step closer to her. “I just know.”

Liz swallowed hard, eager to change the subject. “Okay,” she said, looking around at the training equipment again, “how do we start?”

It took Zan a moment to follow her new line of thought. For a second he’d thought she was talking about starting something between them, but again her mind had gone a completely different direction, and Zan realized she was nervous.

He used a wave of his hand to change a practice dummy into two chairs, and motioned for her to sit.

“Wow,” she said, taking a seat. “It will take a bit of getting use to seeing you using your powers like that. Max, Michael and Isabel hardly ever use theirs.”

Zan sat next to her. “They’ve been hiding all their lives, afraid to expose themselves. That’s why we’re training you to control your powers, so you don’t have to worry about accidents.”

She nodded. “Isn’t Ava coming?”

“Not this time,” Zan said. “She had some errands to run. But I can start you on the basics.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Tess and Kyle moved through the store arguing.

“I thought we were getting some candy,” Tess said, looking around. “This isn’t the candy aisle,” she said sarcastically.

Kyle rolled his eyes. “I told you I need some t-shirts. It seems like they keep disappearing.”

“Oh,” Tess said with a laugh, “you mean the ones I’ve been wearing to bed?”

“What?” Kyle stopped, grabbing Tess’ arm and pulling her around to look at him. “You’ve been stealing my shirts?”

“Well,” Tess purred, “you said you didn’t want me to sleep naked.”

“I,” Kyle started. He shook his head, pointing at her. “You…”

She fluffed up his hair, giggling. “Guess you do need some new shirts.” She motioned to the store. “Where do you think they are?”

Kyle released a sigh, knowing better than to pursue the subject. “I think,” he said, heading toward an aisle, talking to her over his shoulder, ”we have to go this way.”

He bumped into someone. “Sorry,” he said, quickly grabbing her by the shoulders to steady her. “I didn’t see…”

He trailed off as he turned and really looked at her. She was Tess, but she wasn’t, and if he didn’t know Tess so well, he realized that he might not have even recognized her.

Luminescent blue eyes met his, and he felt a jolt in his gut.

“Oh,” said Tess next to him. “Kyle, this is Ava. I told you about her.”

Kyle nodded dumbly and Ava smiled. “Damn Tess,” she said, “you’ve been holding out on me. You didn’t tell me he was so gorgeous.”

Ava winked at him. “And so strong,” she said glancing down at his hands that were still clasping her shoulders.

Kyle looked down, seeing that he was still touching her and immediately dropped his hands. His eyes bounced from Ava to Tess as his mind raced to catch up. “Wait, you two talked about me?”

Ava nodded. “Yeah, Tess told me all about you at our training session yesterday.” Her eyes dropped down his body, and then back up. “Even about the Calvin’s.”

“What?!?!” Kyle asked, his voice going up several octaves. “You discussed…” he trailed off as he realized he was almost shouting. He lowered his voice almost to a whisper. “You discussed my underwear?”

Tess looked at Ava. “See, I told you he’s kinda uptight.”

Ava smiled. “I think he’s cute.”

Kyle looked at her, and when he saw she wasn’t joking, he smiled.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


All day Max had been looking forward to seeing Liz and he’d come to the Crashdown at five like they’d arranged. Liz was waiting for him in a booth with her books already spread around her, and a cherry Coke for him. He joined her with a smile.

“Hey, Liz,” he greeted.

“Hey, Max,” she said with a shy smile.

His stomach flipped like it always did around her. More than anything he wanted to touch her, but he forced himself to calm down. “Ready to study?” he asked, aware of how stupid it sounded.

“Yeah,” she agreed.

They finished the Physics in just under an hour, and the whole time Max had been arguing with himself. He desperately wanted to know what was going on with Liz, but he’d been so afraid of pushing her. But for some reason Zan and Ava’s appearance in town made him feel like he was running out of time.

He decided he couldn’t wait any longer. “Liz,” he said, drawing her attention away from her books. “Can I talk to you, in private?”

Liz looked at him and glanced quickly around the Crashdown, noting the number of people, and nodded. “Sure,” she said quietly. “Let’s go up to my room.”

Max gathered his books and followed her into the back, up the stairs, and into her room. She closed the door behind them. “What’s going on, Max?”

He walked across the room, staring out her window, wondering where to start.

Liz could see how worried he was. “Max, is everything okay?”

“I don’t know,” he admitted, turning to face her. “That’s what I was hoping you could tell me.”

Confusion creased her brow.

“Liz, just hear me out,” he said.

“Okay,” she agreed.

“Liz, I know something has been really wrong for a long time now. You’ve been acting strangely. You tried to get me together with Tess. Then you came to my room to tell me you wanted to be safe and date normal boys, and you set me up to find you in bed with Kyle.”

She started to speak, but he held up a hand. “There’s no use trying to deny it, Liz. I know you didn’t sleep with Kyle, just like I know you are lying about not wanting to be with me.”

He held her eyes. “Liz, I can see the love in your eyes. No matter how much you deny it, I know you love me, and I want to know the real reason you are pushing me away.”

Liz looked at Max miserably. She couldn’t believe he had figured out so much. She had to try and explain without telling him about Future Max and everything.

“Max,” she started, her voice choked with tears as he held his eyes. She wanted to lie to him, to tell him she didn’t want to be with him but she just couldn’t. Everything about him was begging her to be candid, and she couldn’t stand to crush him again.

“I do love you,” Max,” she admitted. “More than anything I love you, but we can’t be together. You have to be with Tess. Nasedo told us over and over, and we both heard the message from your mother. The four of you are made to be together, to work as a unit. With the four of you, your powers are stronger. You have to see that.”

Max shook his head. “Maybe that’s true, but it doesn’t mean I have to be with her. We can work together without being together.”

Liz started to shake her head, but Max cut her off. “I don’t love Tess,” he said gruffly. “I could never love her. I could never be with her like that. It just isn’t possible.”

“But Max,” Liz protested.

He took a step closer, putting his hand on her arm. “Liz, it would be like me asking you to be with Michael or Alex. You couldn’t do it. Love has to be there, chemistry. You can’t force it.”

“But Tess was your wife,” Liz said sadly, “you loved her.”

Max shook his head. “Who says I loved her?” he asked. “Political, loveless marriages are made all the time. Maybe I married her to seal a contract or to gain support.”

“You don’t know that Max,” Liz sighed. “It’s more likely that you were in love and got married.”

“I don’t think so,” Max said decisively. “It’s true I don’t remember what happened, and I admit she seemed familiar when I first saw her. But if I loved her, I know I would remember, or I’d be drawn to her, and I’m just not. From the beginning I felt a special love and friendship for Isabel and Michael, and I don’t feel that with Tess. Even now that I know her better I don’t feel more for her than a sense of duty to protect her.”

Liz jumped on his words. “But you feel a duty to her, Max,” she explained, “and she feels familiar.”

“That’s not enough to build a relationship on,” Max said. “Tess knows I don’t love her. She knows I want to be with you. I’ll tell her we’re going to be together, but she’ll always be part of our family.”

Liz grabbed his arm. “Max, you can’t,” she said, horrified. “What if she leaves? You aren’t strong enough without her to defeat Khivar.”

Max looked at Liz’s hand on him. She hadn’t touched him for months and he couldn’t help a smile, even in the midst of her panic. “Liz,” he said softly, cupping her cheek, “it will be okay. I can make Tess see how much we need her, and how much a part of us she is.”

“No,” Liz said, gripping him harder. “Max, you’ve got to promise me you won’t talk to her. Please.”

“Okay,” he agreed to calm her down. “I won’t say anything to her until you feel okay about it.”

Liz’s lips parted as she tried to find the words to make him understand, and Max took the opportunity to kiss her.

In a single motion he slid his fingers into her hair, pulling her toward him, and lowered his head, pressing his lips to hers.

He kissed her softly, feathering his lips over her, putting all of his love and longing into it.

At first Liz was shocked, and froze under his touch, but after a long moment she started to respond.

Her hands rose to Max’s chest, and she genuinely wasn’t sure if she had done it to be closer to him or push him away. Nothing seemed more right than being with Max.

As they kissed a connection opened between them and Max was deluged with her feelings, her love for him and her desire, her loneliness, and even her fear. He’d known she was afraid, but the depth of the fear surprised him. She was terrified, and he was sure he’d just discovered the reason why. Liz was worried that they wouldn’t be strong enough to defeat their enemies and they’d all die, and it would be her fault for separating him from Tess.

He wrapped his other arm around Liz’s waist, pulling her to him, as he deepened the kiss. He hadn’t held her in his arms for months and it felt so good having her there again. He’d already made up his mind that this time he wasn’t going to let her go, and he’d do anything to keep them together.

Suddenly Liz pulled away. “No,” she said, shaking her head furiously. “We can’t.” Tears poured from her eyes. “I’m sorry Max, but we can’t be together.”

Max took a step toward her but she backed up. “Please Max,” she begged, “please stop.”

He shook his head. “For now, but I’ll never give you up.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
Last edited by RoswellOracle on Sat Jun 06, 2009 12:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt6 5/15

Post by RoswellOracle » Fri May 22, 2009 11:30 am

Thanks for the feedback guys!

Morning Dreamgirl – thanks. I’m glad you’re enjoying the story.
Behrstars
Alien_Friend – glad you’re still loving it
Pandas2001
NotYourChick – it’s about time Max stood up for what he wants
Mirae01
Scorpio6 - Liz definitely has a hard choice


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 7


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Monday, October 23)

Liz hurried to her locker. She had just arrived at school and there were only a few minutes before the bell rang for her first class. She was late because she’d hardly gotten any sleep. Her mind had been too active.

She’d replayed Max’s kiss over and over in her head, savoring the sweetness, and wanting more. It felt like her whole body had come alive again when she was in his arms. She felt like she had when they were looking for the orb, hot and shivery, like she couldn’t get close enough to him and only his touch would give her relief.

When Max was in her room last night, he said he’d never give her up, and she was so tempted just to give in to him.

The small amount of sleep she had gotten was full of dreams. Erotic dreams. Max’s hands and mouth all over her, touching, caressing, arousing. Slowly they peeled off each others’ clothes, exploring, their naked skin pressed together.

She’d had similar dreams before, but last night they had been so vivid, almost like it had really happened. And the strange thing was that Max kept turning into Zan.

It didn’t mean anything, she told herself. Zan looked like Max, she’d been spending a lot of time with him recently, and he’d surprised her with the Shakespeare quotation. She wasn’t attracted to him or anything.

The thing she was worried about was Max’s attitude toward Tess.

He said he’d never be with her and Liz had no idea what to do about it. Would it be enough for her to stay away from Max?

“Hey, Liz,” a deep voice rumbled behind her.

She turned, not even surprised. “Max.”

Against her will her eyes bounced from his eyes to his lips and traveled quickly over his muscular arms. A shiver of desire ripped through her as her dream came back to her, and she forced her gaze to meet his.

“How are you?” he asked.

“Fine,” she said, turning away to shut her locker, so she could regain control of herself. “How are you?”

“Good,” he said absently. “Liz, I wanted you to know that I didn’t mean to upset you last night, but I meant what I said. I love you, and I want to be with you.”

She shook her head. “Max, you know why we can’t be together.”

Clutching her books to her chest, she didn’t even look at him as she started down the hall.

Max followed her. “I know you’re scared, but all we have to do is talk to Tess and make sure she’s okay with it.”

Liz glanced at him. “Max, she’s not going to be okay with it.”

“We won’t know until we ask her,” he said. “And if she’s okay with it, you’re out of excuses.”

Liz stopped, turning to Max, and pulling him aside. “Max,” she said, trying not to sound panicked, “you can’t ask her. You promised. She’s still expecting you to get together, and you will basically be telling her that she has no chance with you.”

Max shook his head. “I’ve told her that many times already, and she doesn’t have any reason to think it’s changed.”

“Yes, she does,” Liz said. “I told her I don’t want to be with you, and I tried to get you together, remember?”

“No,” Max said, “just because I’m not with you, doesn’t mean I want her.”

“That’s exactly what Tess thinks,” Liz told him. “She sees me as the only obstacle between you. She thinks you would be together if it weren’t for me.”

Max reached out, touching her arm. “Liz, you can’t talk me into being with Tess. I only want you. You are all I’ve ever wanted, and I’m going to find a way for us to be together.”

She smiled sadly. “We keep going around in circles and it never gets us anywhere.”

“Okay,” he agreed, “we’ll let the subject drop, for now.”

He released her and they resumed walking down the hall.

“By the way,” Max said, “I forgot to ask last night. When you were with Zan did he tell you what your special power is?”

Liz smiled. “I was so preoccupied, I completely forgot to ask him. But Zan wants me to come after school with you guys to training, so maybe I can ask him then.”

“Oh,” Max said, surprised but pleased. “Do you want to ride with us?”

“Sure,” Liz agreed. “Thanks.”

Liz stopped at the door to her class. “Where do you want to meet?”

“I’ll come by your locker after school,” he said with a smile.

“Okay,” she agreed, “I’ll see you in Physics.”

“Yeah,” Max said.

She went inside and took her seat with a sigh. She was still worried, but she felt so much lighter since her talk with Max last night. A huge burden had been lifted when she admitted the truth to him.

Max was asking questions and trying to figure out how they could be together, but he’d promised he wouldn’t talk to Tess. And now at least she knew he wasn’t hurting from her lies.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max continued down the hall, smiling. He hadn’t felt so good in months.

Liz was finally telling him the truth, and she still loved him!

He was so glad he had confronted her and put an end to months of speculation. He’d been right all along, Liz couldn’t betray him. She’d been pushing him away because she felt it was the right thing to do. But now he knew the truth.

At first he’d been worried about his impulse to kiss her, but Liz responded to him, kissed him back. It had been so sweet, he’d never wanted it to end.

Liz was still upset, and he could understand her concerns, but he wasn’t going to let the possibility of what might happen keep them apart. He was going to find a way to keep Tess with them, and be with Liz.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Kyle sat at a table in the quad, humming softly to himself as he started blankly at the book laid out before him. He was supposed to be doing his homework, but all he could think of was Ava.

Their short encounter in the store played over and over in his mind as he tried to remember every detail about her.

Her hair was straight and cut short, she’d died it with pink and black stripes, and her eyebrow and pouty bottom lip were pierced. She’d worn a short skirt, showing off her fabulous legs and she’d tied a leather jacked around her tiny waist. The black v-neck shirt showed her large breasts to perfection and he’d even caught the flash of a tattoo around her navel as her shirt rode up.

She was beautiful and spunky like Tess, but she had something else too. She was exotic but somehow seemed more down-to-earth than Tess. And while Tess liked to tease him with her sexuality, Kyle felt Ava was more approachable.

At one time he’d had feelings for Tess and he really thought they had a chance. But she’d been pulling away from him since the Skins had come to town, and he knew she still wanted Max. They were still friends but it would never be more than that. It had hurt a little, but he’d gotten over it quickly. His feelings obviously hadn’t been strong.

But with Ava it was completely different.

The instant their eyes had met he’d been hooked. Feelings surged through him that he didn’t even know he had, and he couldn’t stop thinking about her.

He wanted to ask her out and get to know her better, but she was probably with Zan. Or was she? He didn’t know Zan, had never met him, but he couldn’t help wondering if Zan like Max had rejected his former wife.

Kyle was determined to find out. And if Zan wasn’t with Ava, Kyle was going take advantage of the situation.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Tess arrived early for the training session and was just emerging from her car when the door to the warehouse was thrown open and Zan emerged. His gaze raked over her car and Tess saw disappointment fill his eyes.

He greeted her with a brief smile and then looked past her, obviously hoping to see someone else.

Tess felt the familiar slash of pain and disappointment in her heart that she always got when she was around Max. Zan looked at her the same way Max did, barely acknowledging her, dismissing her as if she didn’t have a place in his life.

She sighed, resigned. Zan must be looking for Max, she thought, or maybe Michael. Zan and Michael had discussed the X-games for a good portion of the last training session. Maybe he wanted to continue the conversation.

It must be lonely for Zan and Ava, Tess thought. They had no friends, or family, and they were by themselves most of the time. Zan probably craved male companionship.

Ava came out then, greeting Tess, and a moment later the loud rumble of a motorcycle announced Michael’s arrival.

Tess watched as Zan clasped Michael’s hand like an old friend, but still his eyes went to the road looking for someone. Max, Tess thought. Zan was watching for Max. It seemed a little strange to her. She always felt a bit weird around her double, but maybe Zan had something to talk to Max about.

With a shrug she went inside with Ava, while Michael and Zan stayed in the parking lot talking about his motorcycle.

Through the window she watched them and saw Zan straighten up as the Jeep finally pulled into the lot. Immediately Zan left Michael, going to over to greet the new arrivals. But Tess frowned as three people got out of the Jeep, and a surge of anger rushed through her as she recognized the unexpected addition.

“What’s she doing here?” Tess blurted out, pointing at Liz.

Ava followed the direction of her finger. “Oh,” she said lightly, “didn’t anyone tell you?”

Tess looked at Ava surprised as the other girl continued. “Zan figured out that Liz will get powers, because of the healing.”

“What?” Tess asked dumbfounded, looking back at the small brunette through the window. “She has powers now?”

“Not yet,” Ava said. “She doesn’t know how to make them work, that’s why she’s training with us. Zan has her coming here every day.”

Looking back at Ava, Tess was stunned. “Wait a minute. We only come three times a week, and Liz is coming every day?”

“Well,” Ava said, slowly, “I thought it was a lot too, but Zan wanted to make sure she could control herself, so she didn’t have any accidents and expose herself or us.”

The others came inside and Tess looked at them with growing anger. She couldn’t believe no one had told her about Liz’s supposed powers. Max, Michael and Isabel never told her anything, like she wasn’t even part of their group.

She thought she and Max had been getting closer after he’d found Liz in bed with Kyle, and after she’d destroyed the Skins. But in the last week Max had been pulling away from her, and here he was with Liz again.

It just wasn’t fair that everything seemed to go Liz’s way, Tess thought, still glaring at the brunette. Once again Liz was the center of attention and all because she’d been shot. Tess still couldn’t believe that Max risked his life to save her. If a human had been shot near her, she’d have no problem walking away. Well, she admitted, maybe if it were Kyle…

“Hey,” Tess blurted out suddenly. “What about Kyle?”

Everyone in the room looked at her in surprise, and she could see they didn’t know what she was talking about.

Liz gasped, putting a hand to her mouth and Tess knew she realized.

Tess continued. “Kyle was shot, and Max healed him too.”

“Oh!” Isabel exclaimed. “We didn’t even think about Kyle.”

“Wait,” Zan said, turning to Max. “You healed somebody else?”

Max nodded. “Yeah, he would have died.”

Zan smiled. “How many humans have you healed?”

Max looked embarrassed. “Only the two.”

Liz touched his arm. “And we appreciate it,” she said softly. “No matter what the consequences.”

Max held her eyes, seeing the truth in them and nodded. He wanted to say something to her, but not with everyone else around. His mouth opened, as he looked for other words.

Ava spoke up, breaking the moment. “So Kyle could have powers too,” she said. “We’ll have to train him too.”

Zan nodded. “Yeah,” he said, turning to Liz. “Why don’t you bring him tomorrow when you come?”

“Okay,” Liz agreed.

“Do you need me to pick you up again?” Zan asked her.

Liz shook her head. “No, Kyle will bring me.”

Max’s head jerked toward Zan as he felt an unexpected jolt of jealously. Liz was already so comfortable with the newcomer, and Max knew she watched everything she said and did around him.

“Great,” Michael said. “Let’s get going. I want to be home by six. Motocross is on.”

The girls rolled their eyes, but Zan smirked. “The finals?”

“No,” Michael said, shaking his head. “Quarterfinals. The finals are on Saturday.”

“ESPN?” Zan asked. “We don’t have cable yet.”

“You should come over,” Michael invited. “My rent includes cable.”

Zan nodded. “That’d be great.” He looked at Max. “You coming too?”

Michael laughed, slapping Max on the back. “He’s really not into motorcycles.”

“Aaaheem,” Ava interrupted, “getting back to the training. How do you want to do this?”

Zan smiled. “I’ve got it all figured out.” He motioned to Max and Michael and then to a pair of targets. “You two are going to start practicing your aim, Ava will work with Isabel and Tess, and I’ll work with Liz.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


The training session lasted two hours, and at the end everyone was exhausted. Even though it was only the second lesson, everyone had made a little progress, everyone except Liz. She still hadn’t been able to harness the power inside her.

A comment Zan made caused Ava to realize that he had brought Liz to their place yesterday to train with him. He hadn’t said a word about it to her, and she couldn’t help wondering why.

Carefully she’d watched Zan throughout the practice. He’d paired himself with Liz, spending as much time alone with her as he could. He’d touched her several times, and when Liz wasn’t looking at him, his gaze raked over her like he was trying to memorize everything about her.

Ava waited until everyone left, and then she confronted Zan. “You didn’t tell me you invited Liz here yesterday to train,” she said with a smile.

Zan shrugged, trying to make it seem like is wasn’t a big deal. “You had plans already, and she’s so new to having powers, I knew she wouldn’t be able to do anything yet.”

Ava nodded. Zan was trying to act casual about it, but she could see through him. She knew him too well. Meeting Liz hadn’t been a chance encounter like he’d told the others. Zan had tracked Liz down to talk to her and get to know her, and he’d discovered she had powers. So he’d taken advantage of the situation, using the training to be alone with her.

Ava studied him closely. He seemed different somehow. Lighter. Happy. And suddenly she was sure.

She spoke without thinking. “And you wanted to be alone with her,” she said, a bit sadly. Before he could answer, she continued. “You’re in love with her, aren’t you?”

Zan hadn’t said anything to Ava because he didn’t want to hurt her. “Ava,” he started.

She shook her head, smiling, even though she had a pain in her heart. For years she’d known he didn’t love her, but there was still a tiny part of her that hoped.

But what she’d told him was true too. She wanted him to find someone he could love.

The last of her love for him was shattering, and it hurt, but at the same time she almost felt free. She gave him a genuine smile. “I’m happy for you Zan, I really am. I just didn’t think it would happen so fast.”

“Neither did I,” he admitted, putting an arm around her.

“You just met her,” Ava continued. “How did you know?”

“I had a feeling about her,” Zan said, his arm around her holding her closer.

“You had a feeling about her,” Ava said softly, thinking about her encounter with Kyle. She wasn’t in love with him, but he was interesting. He was the first guy who had interested her in a long time. “What kind of feeling?” she asked.

Zan smiled. “When I first saw her, I just knew she was the one for me.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Isabel and Tess had decided to go shopping so Max drove Liz home alone.

It had been a great day, he thought, spending so much time with her. He just wished she would allow more between them than friendship. He wanted to take her in his arms and kiss her until they both were gasping for breath.

But that would come, he kept telling himself. He had already made so much progress with her, and now he just had to convince her everything would be all right if they were together.

He didn’t like promising her that he wouldn’t talk to Tess, but he was sure he could get Liz to change her mind. She was just so scared, it worried him.

Max glanced at her where she sat next to him. His heart skipped, like it always did, but for a moment he felt a strange, nagging feeling in the back of his mind, like he was forgetting something.

Liz looked over, meeting his eyes and smiled, and in that instant he forgot about everything else. He would find a way to be with her, and it would all be worth it when they were finally together again.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt7 5/22

Post by RoswellOracle » Sat Jun 06, 2009 12:32 pm

Thanks for the feedback guys!!!


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 8


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Tuesday, October 24)

The door of the warehouse was open and Liz and Kyle went inside. Liz glanced quickly around but didn’t see anyone and called out, “Hello, Zan, Ava?”

Ava’s pink head popped out of a doorway upstairs and she grinned when she saw them. “Yo,” she said, starting down the stairs. “How’s it going?”

Liz smiled back. She’d liked Ava instantly when they’d met. Unlike Tess, Ava didn’t try to intimidate or act superior, and Liz felt they could be good friends.

“I’m fine,” she said, answering Ava’s question, “no accidents with my powers or anything.”

Ava stopped before them and Liz saw her gaze shift to Kyle. “I guess you two already met.”

“Yeah,” Ava said grinning at Kyle. “You were shopping for underwear.”

Liz couldn’t believe her eyes, but Kyle actually blushed.

“No,” he said quickly, “it was t-shirts. It’s you and Tess that are obsessed with my underwear.”

Ava nudged his arm, smiling wider. “You wish.”

Kyle spluttered, looking for something to say and Liz grinned too.

A noise from above made Liz look up just in time to see Zan emerging, obviously fresh out of the shower. He was bare-chested but wearing black jeans and boots, and as he started toward the stairs he pulled a gray t-shirt over his head.

Liz felt her mouth go dry when she saw the muscles in his chest bulging and straining as he settled the shirt in place. She swallowed hard. She had a weakness for great chests, and like Max’s, Zan’s was incredible.

His hand rose to his wet hair, and with one motion he smoothed through the dark mass, drying it and shaping it into the spikes he always wore.

“Wow,” Liz exclaimed a bit breathlessly, “that would sure come in handy on bad hair days.”

Zan smiled, glad she was watching him. “You’ll be able to do it, no problem. We’ve just got to work on your control a little first.”

Liz nodded. “You mean I’ve got to be able to produce any power first.”

He shrugged. “It might take a little time, but you’ll do it.”

Looking away from her, he met Kyle’s eyes. “I’m Zan,” he said with a dip of his head.

Kyle nodded back. “I’m another one of Max Evans’ human experiments.”

Both Zan and Ava laughed and Liz rolled her eyes. “Kyle,” she groaned.

“Well,” Ava said, turning to Liz, “I’m sure Max couldn’t help himself.” She motioned to Kyle. “He’s such a unique specimen, I’m tempted to probe his brain to see how it works.”

“Hey,” Kyle started to complain.

Zan clapped a hand on Kyle’s back. “Let’s go over here,” he said, motioning to the other side of the room. “We’ll let the girls talk, and you can tell me what Max did to you.”

Kyle glared at the giggling girls as he walked away with Zan, and they laughed harder.

Ava smiled. She liked bantering with him. She hadn’t had so much fun in a while.

The conversation she’d had with Zan the day before came back to her. True, she wasn’t in love with Kyle, but she did feel something for him. She hadn’t been interested in a guy in a long time and it might be fun to get to know him better.

Impulsively she turned to Liz. “Do you know if Kyle’s seeing anyone?” she said in a low voice.

Liz was completely surprised by her question. “But…” she trailed off. Quickly her eyes flicked across the room to where the guys were standing and then back to Ava. “Aren’t you and Zan together?”

Ava’s smile dimmed a little. “From the time when we were little, we were told that we belonged together. And Zan tried,” she said, looking over at him briefly. “He really did, but he never really loved me, and he was never really happy.”

She looked back at Liz. “Even when we were together, I always felt like he was waiting for someone else to walk into his life.”

“I’m sorry,” Liz said.

Ava shook her head. “It’s okay. It wasn’t meant to be, that’s all. And we both deserve someone who loves us back and will make us happy.”

Liz thought of Max and how he had said almost exactly the same thing about Tess. He didn’t love her and he would never be happy with her. So how was he supposed to be with her?

Ava had accepted that Zan didn’t want to be with her, and was trying to move on. Would Tess eventually come to the same conclusion? And if she did, would she leave them to their enemies or just take it as part of life like Ava?

“So,” Ava said again, snapping Liz out of her thoughts, “is Kyle seeing anyone?” She grinned. “I’m not saying that I want to go there, but there is something about him.”

They glanced toward the guys only to see that they were walking back to them. “Quick,” Ava whispered, “they’re coming.”

Liz was stunned from the quick subject changes. “Ummm,” she said, trying to process the question, “no, he’s not seeing anyone.”

“Cool,” Ava said.

Zan called out when they were only a few feet away. “Well, the boy is one-hundred percent human. No powers.”

“Wait,” Liz said, confusion creasing her brow, “how is that possible? Max healed him just like he healed me.”

“Not exactly,” Zan said, focusing on her. “Kyle was shot and would have died, but human medicine could have still saved him.” His face seemed to lose some color. “But Liz, you were beyond help. Max literally pulled you back from death, that’s completely different.”

“How?” Liz asked, fascinated.

“It’s not like mending a bone or a cut,” Zan said, looking for the words to explain. “To bring you back, Max had to change you.”

Liz held up her hands, looking at them and then looked at Kyle.

Kyle smiled weakly. “I don’t know if I’m happy or relieved. Of course the Buddha says, a carpenter bends wood, but a rock is never shaken by the wind.”

Ava’s eyebrows rose. “A Buddhist?” she asked, surprised. She stepped forward, taking his arm. “Why don’t you come upstairs and I’ll make you a sandwich, and you can tell me all about it.”

Liz watched them go, and she heard Kyle say, “It might have been cool to have alien powers though.”

With a smile she looked back at Zan to find him watching her. She swore her heart skipped a beat as she remembered what Maria had said.

It was possible Zan was interested in her, she told herself. The hybrids were made from the same man, and they supposedly had his memories. They could have retained some of his likes and dislikes too.

And Zan wasn’t with Ava.

Liz shook her head to clear her thoughts. This wasn’t the time to be speculating about Zan.

“So,” she started nervously.

Zan smiled. “Yes,” he said, nodding, “I’m sure you have powers.”

Liz held his gaze. Somewhere in the back of her mind she’d been wondering that very thing, and he’d answered her question as if he’d read her mind. “But…”

His smile widened, cutting her off. “I can feel the power in you,” he said stepping closer. “Don’t you feel it?”

“No,” Liz said. “But sometimes I feel Max’s power I think,” she admitted, looking down, “and…” she trailed off, and then continued softly, “and your power.”

“Really?” Zan asked interestedly. He took another step toward her, so there were only inches separating them. “I can understand why you’d feel Max’s power. He saved you so there is bound to be a connection. But how can you feel me?”

“I don’t know,” Liz said breathily, raising her eyes to meet his. “I thought maybe you could explain it.”

Zan held her eyes as he reached out to touch her arm. “Maybe I can,” he said softly. Stroking her silky skin, he slowly closed the distance between them.

Liz’s heart beat in her chest quickly, and she couldn’t look away from him. “But we don’t have a connection,” she protested, her voice practically a whisper. “You’ve never connected with me.”

Taking another step, Zan stopped so that their bodies were barely touching. “I can connect with you right now,” he rumbled.

He watched Liz closely. She was nervous but he could sense the excitement in her too. His eyes flicked to her lips and he started to lower his head. He met her gaze again, watching her reactions carefully.

Slowly, he told himself, don’t scare her.

Liz’s eyes widened, looking at him curiously, but she didn’t move. His heart leapt. She wants this too, he thought.

Reaching up, he cupped her cheek. Their lips were only inches apart when a sudden noise from upstairs made Liz jump back. She recoiled from him like they’d been caught doing something wrong.

Liz looked up at the stairs and then down at her hands that she was wringing.

Following her gaze upstairs, Zan noted that no one was there, before he looked back at her.

“Ummm,” she said nervously. “We should get started,” she said. A blush covered her cheeks, “With the training,” she added quickly. “We should get started with the training.”

Zan wasn’t sure what had just happened. Liz was into him, he was positive, but maybe he was going too fast for her. After all, he reasoned, they didn’t really know each other very well.

“Okay,” he agreed, using a swipe of his hand to create a couple of chairs. He sat down next to her, feeling anxious and confused. When he wanted something he was used to taking it, but he had to move slowly with Liz. He didn’t want to risk ruining things between them.

He’d been planning to connect with her today and tell her what her unique power was. But now he was afraid she would think he was rushing her.

Talking a deep, calming breath, he smiled at her. “We’ll start where we did yesterday,” he said, turning his mind to her training. “Focus on feeling the power inside you.”

Liz closed her eyes, and Zan sighed. She trusted him, he assured himself, and he was sure she wanted him. It was only a matter of time before she was his.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


All the way up the stairs Ava teased Kyle about his underwear, and as they entered the kitchen she playfully tugged his arm.

Kyle smiled. The way Ava was acting he was sure she was interested in him, and she’d used the excuse of making him a sandwich to get him alone.

He watched her as she entered the kitchen ahead of him, his eyes running over her slim frame. Damn, he thought, she was beautiful.

Ava pulled open the refrigerator door and called over her shoulder to him. “We’ve got ham, turkey, pastrami, oh, and I think there’s some meatloaf left,” she said rummaging through the drawers. “Zan loves it, but I don’t think he ate it all.”

Kyle slumped against the counter suddenly feeling deflated. He’d hoped that Zan and Ava weren’t together but the way she was talking about him made Kyle feel the intimacy between them. “So,” he said grimly, “you and Zan are… together.”

Ava heard the despair in his tone and quickly looked up at him. She was shocked to see that all the playfulness had instantly left him. “No,” she said quickly. “We’re not.”

He met her eyes and she saw a spark of hope. She continued. “We tried, but it didn’t work out.”

Kyle nodded. “So you’re just friends now,” he said.

“More like family,” she said.

He straightened up, crossing to her so only the door of the refrigerator separated them. With a grin he leaned his arm across the top as he held her eyes. “Meatloaf sounds great,” he said softly. “It’s one of my favorites.”

Quickly she gathered everything she needed out of the fridge, laying it on the counter.

Kyle came to stand beside her. “Need any help?”

Ava shook her head, and used a pass of her hand to construct two perfect sandwiches.

“Wow!” Kyle exclaimed. “That comes in handy!”

She handed him one of the sandwiches, and he took a big bite. His eyes almost rolled back into his head it was so good. “This is great,” he said, talking around the food he was still chewing. “The best I’ve ever had.”

Ava smiled. “I made it,” she said proudly, “special alien recipe.”

Kyle swallowed hard. They were only inches away and he suddenly couldn’t contain himself anymore. “You want to go out with me,” he blurted out, “tonight?”

Ava’s smile widened. “Yeah.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Liz had been pacing in her room for what seemed like hours.

Stupid, stupid, stupid, she repeated in her mind over and over. What had she been thinking?

She had been sure Zan was going to kiss her and she hadn’t done a thing to stop it. She’d even wanted him to. She’d felt this overwhelming attraction to him, this need to be closer to him.

But I’m in love with Max, she reminded herself. I’d be with Max right now if it wasn’t for what Future Max had said.

It was just because Zan was Max’s double, she reassured herself. She’d only had those kinds of feelings for Max, and now for Zan because she couldn’t be with Max. She was lonely, confused, and Zan was attracted to her. His feelings had just overwhelmed her. It wasn’t like she really wanted him.

That’s it, she told herself again. She didn’t really want Zan, she was just confusing him with Max.

She didn’t want Zan to cup her cheek, like he had done today, and press his lips to hers. She didn’t want him to wrap his arms around her and slide his tongue into her mouth. She didn’t want to feel his sculpted body pressed to hers.

A shiver of pure desire ripped through her and she violently shoved the thoughts away. Those feelings weren’t real. She was just using Zan as a substitute for Max, and it wasn’t fair to any of them.

She’d have to be careful around Zan in the future, and not give him any encouragement. She didn’t want him to think he had a chance with her.

Of course she’d be nice and polite, but she’d be all business when they were together, and she wouldn’t let things get out of control like they almost did earlier.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt8 6/6

Post by RoswellOracle » Sat Jun 27, 2009 11:30 am

Thanks for the feedback guys! I'm glad you are enjoying!

Alien_friend – glad you love Zan. I certainly love writing him.
Alysluv
Scorpio6
Mirae01
Smac – you are right, Max or Zan, what an incredibly hard choice
DestinyC
DaleStateShorty – don’t count Max out yet


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 9


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


(Saturday, October 28)

Zan lifted the weight with his right arm, bending his elbow to bring it up into a curl. He repeated the action with his left arm, alternating between the two, keeping up a steady rhythm.

Working out was a good way to alleviate frustration, and it gave him time to think. And the topic that had been on his mind more than any other since he’d come to Rowell was occupying his thoughts again.

Liz.

All week he’d been considering her actions in the training session on Tuesday, and he still wasn’t any closer to an answer.

They had come so close to kissing, but after that she had kept him at a distance. She still came for the training sessions, still worked with him, still was the same friendly Liz, but she had also been cautious.

Any time he had tried to get close to her, she shied away, any time he tried to talk to her about what had happened, she changed the subject.

He was completely confused. He’d seen in her eyes that she was interested in him, he just couldn’t understand why she wasn’t letting something develop between them.


She’d started acting funny the next day, Wednesday. She’d come to training with the group and he’d waited until they were alone before he whispered flirtatiously in her ear. But she had completely ignored him. She’d given him a soft smile and then continued with her practice.

He’d been stunned at first. Then he reasoned that perhaps Liz didn’t want to flirt with him in front of her friends.

So he’d waited until the next day, Thursday, when they were alone to try again, but she’d still been distant. He’d almost decided that she’d changed her mind about him, but several times he’d caught her looking at him when she thought he wasn’t paying attention.

No, he’d told himself, she definitely wanted him, but something was holding her back.

He replayed in his mind over and over touching her, slowly getting closer to her until their bodies were touching and the intermingling of their breath as their heads had come together.

It had only been four days ago that he had almost kissed her, but it seemed like months. He wanted her so much.

Late Thursday night he couldn’t stand it any longer and he’d gone to the Crashdown just to see her. The restaurant was closed but he knew she lived above it and hoped to catch a glimpse of her through a window.

Around the side of the building he’d discovered a ladder and climbed it, only to find himself on a small balcony outside Liz’s room. She’d gone to bed early and even though it was dark inside he could see her small form restlessly tossing and turning.

Crouching down beside her window, he’d longed to hold her in him arms and comfort her until she slept more peacefully. He reached out, putting his hand to the glass and watched as her body calmed and she finally settled into a deep sleep.

Just being near her made him feel better, and more complete, and he’d stayed watching her for over an hour before he went home to his own cold bed.

The next night he had gone to see her earlier, climbing up on a nearby building where he could watch her before she went to bed.

She’d been sitting on the lawn chair on the balcony, wrapped in a blanket, reading a thick textbook.

He’d only been there a few minutes before she looked up expectantly as if she knew someone was watching her. Her eyes had gone directly to the spot where he was hidden and searched the darkness, and with surprise he’d felt a jolt of connection.

He hadn’t revealed himself to her though, and after a few moments she’d gone back to her book. He’d stayed until she finished and climbed back in the window.

He’d watched her getting ready for bed, taking off her clothes, revealing her beautiful body to him, piece by piece. Greedily he took in every inch of her, and he even caught a glimpse of creamy breast before she covered it with a nightshirt.

He’d groaned with longing and even though there was no way Liz could have heard him she’d jerked suddenly and turned to the window again. She looked out as if expecting someone, but after a long moment of staring into the darkness she’d turned away.

Sitting at her dressing table she’d brushed out her long hair, and then disappeared into the bathroom for a while. But Zan had stayed, watching her climb into bed and only left after her room had long gone dark.

Zan’s breath came out in rough pants as the physical exertion of lifting the weights started to take its toll, bringing him back to the present.

Turning he placed the weights in their racks, and grabbed his towel, heading upstairs to the shower. He stripped off his clothes and stepped under the hot spray.

He’d been so excited for Liz to come to training that morning. Ava was out with Kyle, and Zan knew he’d have Liz to himself.

She’d shown up on time, greeting him with her usual smile, but he could tell she was nervous and shy. Every time he got close to her, she took a step away, and when he’d touched her, she’d jerked in surprise. She was acting so different than she had before. Something was definitely wrong.

Maybe she thought he wasn’t taking this seriously, and was afraid of becoming just another notch on his belt. Maybe she thought he was only killing time with her, or he tried to seduce every beautiful woman he met.

Whatever the reason, they were moving in the wrong direction, and instead of letting it continue, he was going to find out what was going on.

Turning off the water, Zan headed for his room. With a swipe of his hand, he dried himself and fixed his hair. He went to his closet and grabbed some clothes, not really caring what he wore.

He had a plan now, and it made him feel more confident. He’d go talk to Liz and make her see he was serious about a relationship between them, and then she’d be his.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max sat in his usual booth in the Crashdown with his books spread out before him, but he really didn’t see them. His thoughts were focused on other things besides homework.

He had tried not to let it bother him, he really did, but all week the same things had continued to run through his head over and over. He was becoming obsessed, with Zan.

Max sighed. He knew Zan was there to help, he was sure of it. He trusted him instinctively. His problem was that Zan was everything he wasn’t, and was everything his friends expected him to be.

Everything Zan did was cool, the car he drove, where he lived, how he dressed, how confident he was. Max felt like a complete nerd next to him.

And Max felt like he was losing his best friend, his only friend to Zan. Michael looked up to Zan, he followed Zan, respected him, accepted him as the leader with no questions.

Max felt a jolt of jealously twist his gut. In the months he had been in charge, all Michael had done was complain and criticize his leadership, questioning every decision, and condemning him for his lack of direction.

But Michael and Zan had hit it off instantly. They were both into cars and motorcycles. Zan was interested in sports, like Michael, and he seemed to spend every evening at Michael’s in front of the TV.

Another jolt of jealously made Max wince. It’s not like he and Michael had a lot of plans together, that Zan had interrupted. He and Michael had grown apart, and now Zan seemed to have more in common with his best friend than he did.

And then there was Liz.

The jealously inside Max felt like an aching wound, but he couldn’t stop thinking about the time that Liz and Zan spent alone. He barely saw her at school, and sometimes at the Crashdown, but Zan got to see her every day.

Max knew it was ridiculous. Zan only spent time with Liz to train her, but Max felt like she was spending more time with Zan than she was with him.

And he felt guilty too. Liz had powers because of him, and he didn’t know how to train her. He was so frustrated that he didn’t know how to help her keep herself under control and safe. If Zan hadn’t been there with the answers, he was afraid of what might have happened to Liz.

He felt a flash of anger and envy toward Zan. It seemed like Zan was taking over his life. Zan was a better friend, a better leader, a better king. So what did that leave for him?

His thoughts of Liz made him glance around the restaurant for her, but she was nowhere to be seen.

He wanted to tell her how sorry he was that he wasn’t the one training her. He wanted her to know that he accepted responsibility for her having powers, and would support in any way he could.

A sigh escaped him. He just felt so useless to everyone, but especially to Liz.

He always felt better when they were together, and he wanted her back desperately. The kiss they’d shared a few days ago had been so wonderful, but it seemed like an eternity to him. Things weren’t moving fast enough for him.

He’d told himself not to pressure her, but he couldn’t stand it anymore. He had to have her back in his life.

He looked at his watch again. He knew Liz wasn’t working today, but she usually came into the restaurant anyway, and he’d hoped to convince her to study with him.

Where was she?


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan knew Liz wasn’t working that evening because they’d discussed it earlier at practice. He just hoped he would catch her alone.

He parked his car at the mouth of the alley, jogged eagerly to her ladder, and stood at the base for long moments, just listening. There weren’t any sounds from above, but somehow he just knew she was there.

Grasping a cold rung, he started to pull himself up. He didn’t want to scare her if she was reading on her balcony like he’d seen her doing before, so he tried to go quietly. As his head cleared the top he saw her, just as he’d pictured, wrapped in a blanket, reading, but her greeting took him by surprise,

Liz had heard someone climbing the ladder and without taking her eyes off her book she called out. “Hey, Max.” With a smile she looked up. “Oh,” she said, recognizing her visitor, “Zan, sorry.”

She put her book and blanket aside and got to her feet. “What are you doing here?”

Zan deftly leapt over the wall and crossed the few steps to her. “I thought we should talk.”

“Okay,” Liz said.

She looked down briefly and then back up to meet his eyes. Zan could see the nervousness in her. He was so used to taking what he wanted, but he’d reminded himself repeatedly that he needed to go slow.

“Liz,” he said softly, “I like you, and I think you like me, and I really want to get to know you better.”

Her eyes widened, and a small sound escaped her that might have been surprise. She’d tried to keep him at arm’s length, but she should have known it wouldn’t work. Zan was like Max, stubborn, and he’d never give up without a fight.

He continued. “We haven’t known each other long, but there’s something between us, a connection.”

Liz shook her head, looking away. Something was there but it wasn’t real, she told herself again. It was just her feeling for Max getting mixed up with Zan. “We can’t have a connection,” she denied. “We’ve never connected.”

“Yeah,” he agreed, “and that’s why it’s worth exploring,” he said, taking a step nearer. “The first time I saw you I felt it, and I know you felt it too.”

Liz’s eyes met his. Was she going to have to break his heart too?


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Tess walked with determination. For the last couple of weeks she had given Max the space she thought he needed, but enough was enough. Instead of turning to her for friendship or comfort, once again he was pursuing Liz.

Anger boiled inside Tess as she continued along the sidewalk. She’d thought for sure Max would be hers after Liz had slept with Kyle, but again she’d been wrong.

She’d been supportive, listened to him, tried to be his friend, but nothing was working. He seemed to forget about her the moment she was out of his sight. Flirting with him didn’t work, giving him space didn’t work, so she’d decided that she would take the middle ground. She would try to be around him as much as possible.

That’s why she was heading to the Crashdown. Max was always there.

Tess rolled her eyes. It didn’t take a genius to figure out why either.

She walked past the alley next to the café, and stopped short, her temper rising to an almost uncontrollable level.

Max was climbing up the ladder to Liz’s balcony.

Shadows encased the ladder and she couldn’t see him clearly, but she recognized the outline of his strong body. And even if she didn’t she would have known who it was anyway. After all, who else would be climbing up to see Liz?

Tess fumed as she watched him incredulously. Didn’t he have any pride? How many times did Liz have to tell him she didn’t want him before he got the message?

Suddenly Tess’ anger turned to shock. The figure climbing the ladder emerged into the waning sunlight and she realized it wasn’t Max at all. It was Zan.

Her brow creased in confusion. Why was Zan climbing up to Liz’s balcony? How did he even know she had one?

Wait a minute, Tess thought, Zan had been waiting for someone at the training session, and she had assumed it was Max. But what if it was Liz?

Curious, Tess moved silently closer, eager to hear the conversation between them.

She heard Liz call out. “Hey, Max,” and then quickly changed to “Oh Zan, sorry. What are you doing here?”

So, Tess thought, Liz hadn’t been expecting him.

Zan’s deep tones answered her. “I thought we should talk,” he said.

“Okay,” Liz said.

Zan’s voice lowered as he continued, but Tess could still hear him, and she couldn’t believe her ears. She shook her head slowly. First Max and now Zan. Was every alien King destined to fall in love with Liz?

What did that mousy, human have that she didn’t?

Tess had been a queen, she had incredible powers, and she was willing to do anything for her King. Not to mention she was beautiful and had a killer body she had freely offered to Max.

But instead, both Max and Zan wanted Liz.

Tess’ thoughts drifted back up to the conversation taking place above her, and the more she listened, the more determined she became.

She smiled. She could use this to her advantage.

She’d always thought Liz was so uptight, such a good girl, but she had been so wrong. First Liz slept with Kyle and now she was moving on to Zan.

This was going to kill Max when he found out. He’d been so pissed about Kyle, but he had gotten over it pretty quickly. But when Tess told him that Liz was going after Zan, Max would hate Liz.

Tess practically bounced in place, and then turned and headed for the Crashdown door. She had to tell Max ASAP, she just hoped he had come to the café like he usually did.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Liz shook her head again, but Zan continued. “Go out with me,” he urged. “Spend some time with me, so we can see if this thing between us is real.”

Her heart thudded and she felt the overwhelming need to feel his lips on hers. But it’s not real, she said over and over in her head. It’s not real. I love Max, not Zan.

“Zan,” she said, surprised at how husky her voice sounded.

But she didn’t get the chance to finish the sentence.

Zan couldn’t stand it any longer. The way she was looking at him, her face flushed with desire, chased away all of his good intentions. He closed the few inches between them, cupping her cheek and softly fitted his lips to hers.

At first Liz didn’t respond. Zan could feel her surprise in the rigid set of her body, but he didn’t give up. Gently he brushed his mouth against hers again and again, coaxing her to relax.

He didn’t pull her toward him but raised his other hand so he had her head cradled, lightly stroking the soft skin of her face.

It certainly wasn’t the first kiss with her he’d envisioned, her holding herself so stiffly as he tried to persuade her it was okay. He was about to draw back, when he felt her give a large sigh and her lips moved under his.

It was as if she’d given up the fight against her feelings for him and she started to respond. Her body relaxed and her hands rose up to rest against his chest.

She kissed him back softly, her lips barely brushing his, and Zan felt his heart leap. She did want him.

Fighting to keep himself under control, he fit his lips squarely to hers, kissing her properly. The kiss went on and on, but Liz didn’t object or pull away. He slid one hand into her silky hair, urging her a little closer, and her body seemed to melt into him.

He didn’t want to scare her or rush her, but he couldn’t seem to stop himself from deepening the kiss. His tongue flicked against her lips, and a surge of pure desire rushed through his body when her tongue touched his.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


A satisfied smile spread across Tess’ face as she looked through the front window of the Crashdown. Max was there, sitting in his usual booth, and if she hurried he would get a live show.

Pulling open the door, she headed directly for him, sliding into the seat across from him.

“Hey Max,” she greeted.

He was surprised to see her, she could tell. “Oh, hi Tess,” he greeted.

“So,” she said smoothly, “what are you doing here?”

“I’m waiting for Liz,” he said, hoping Tess would take the hint and leave. “We’re doing our homework together,” he lied, looking around, barely meeting her eyes. “But she’s late.”

Tess’ eyes sparkled with malicious mischief. He’d brought up the subject she wanted to discuss, and she leaned closer. “Oh, I know where Liz is,” she said, lowering her voice as if she were sharing a not-so-well-kept secret. “She and Zan can hardly keep their hands off each other,” she purred.

“What?” Max said incredulously, jerking back, his voice rising in pitch.

Tess noted that his face was white with shock and disbelief. “Oh sure,” she said with a sly grin. “You know how it is at the start of a relationship when you can’t get enough of each other.”

“What are you talking about?” Max demanded angrily. “They’re not together.”

A thousand thoughts were rushing through his head. Zan and Liz? It just wasn’t possible. Tess had to be mistaken, but she was talking about it as if everyone knew.

“Well of course they are,” Tess said with a giggle. “I heard them when I came in. They’re on her balcony right now, making out.”

Without another word, Max bolted out of the café and raced around to the alley. He grabbed a rung of Liz’s ladder and climbed like the fiends of hell were at his heels.

He’d never felt so angry or jealous in his life, but he couldn’t believe it was true. Liz wouldn’t betray him, he was sure of it. But Zan was another story.

Pulling himself up the last few rungs he kept telling himself over and over that Tess was wrong, and there was no way he would find Zan and Liz together like that. They’d be talking, or Zan would be training her.

He finally cleared the edge and he felt as if all the air had been knocked from his lungs.

He had a horrible sense of déjà vu, and it was like everything in front of him was happening in slow motion. Zan was cupping Liz’s head with both hands, holding her to him as he kissed her. Liz’s hands were on Zan’s chest, and Max couldn’t tell if she was trying to push him away or not.

Instantly Max’s shock gave way to anger. Just like he’d thought, Zan was trying to take everything that was his.

Max leapt over the edge of the balcony, fury boiling inside him. “What the fuck is going on?” he roared.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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Re: Never Underestimate Destiny (UC, M/L, Z/L ~ mature) Pt9 6/27

Post by RoswellOracle » Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:08 pm

Thanks for reading guys!

AlysLuv
DestinyC – we love to hate Tess! Lol
Alien_Friend – how to choose? ;)
NotYourChick
Roswellian love – I agree. Max needed a kick in the ass to make him man-up
Dreamers_fan_believe – Tess is certainly using all her tricks to get him
Scorpio6
Jake17 – Zan is ALWAYS friggin hot! Lol
Totallizfan – Liz is the woman!


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Part 10


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max leapt over the edge of the balcony, fury boiling inside him. “What the fuck is going on?” he roared.

Liz jumped away from Zan like she’d been burned, putting a hand to her mouth. She stared horrified at Max, not believing he’d seen her kissing Zan. Max would hate her for sure now. He had proof she was nothing but a slut.

She hadn’t meant to kiss Zan. She was going to turn him down politely, and explain about her relationship with Max, but she hadn’t gotten the chance. Zan had kissed her so sweetly, and it was like she’d had no control over her body. She knew it was no excuse, but she’d been so surprised, and she couldn’t seem to stop herself from responding.

Holding her breath, she waited for Max to tear into her. She’d never seen him so angry, and tears started in her eyes. But as his gaze raked over her, she could see his fury wasn’t directed at her.

Max didn’t blame Liz at all, and he wheeled angrily to Zan. “What are you doing to Liz?” he demanded of his double. “She’s mine.”

Liz felt a thrill rush through her that Max had such strong feelings for her, along with the alarm and guilt she was feeling. She gasped. “Max.”

Max took a step closer to Zan, pointing a finger at his chest. He was so angry, and he saw Zan as the cause of it all.

“Ever since you came into town it’s like you want to replace me,” Max roared. “You know everything about us, and our powers, and you have this big plan to fight our enemies. Michael loves you, follows you around like a puppy, always telling me what a great leader you are, while all he ever does is criticize me. You and Michael hang out way more than he and I do, and he’s my best friend. It’s like your trying to take over everything that’s mine.”

Max took a deep breath. “And I haven’t said a word,” he said, laughing harshly. “I was even glad you were here to help us, glad that someone knew what was going on, and for once it looked like we might get the upper hand.”

Max’s scowl deepened. “But now you’re trying to take Liz too, and she’s where I draw the line.” He pointed at his own chest. “Liz and I have been through hell together, she loves me, and I’ll be damned if I’ll let you come in here and try to take her away from me.”

Liz was shocked by Max’s words. He hadn’t said a word to her about any of his feelings of inadequacy, and she hadn’t realized what he was going through. But he was so angry that he looked ready to fight and she was worried he might attack Zan. She gripped his arm. “Max, please,” she begged.

She turned her gaze to Zan, hoping he wasn’t looking for a fight too, but he held up a placating hand and spoke. “I’m sorry, Max.”

Zan had been so surprised to see a furious Max coming at him but now everything made sense. He’d had no idea Max and Liz were together. They didn’t act like any couple he’d ever seen, they didn’t touch, or kiss, and as far as he could tell, hardly spent time together.

It also explained why Liz had drawn away from him when he started to get close, and why she’d been so reluctant to respond to him. But, he reminded himself, she had responded.

Zan continued. “I’m really sorry,” he said softly. “I like you, Max, I like all of you, and I like living in Roswell. It’s almost like having a family. I was just glad I was fitting in, and I never meant to cause any trouble.”

“I brought Ava here because I do need your help,” he continued. “I can’t beat Lonnie, Rath and Khivar on my own. I never meant to try and take over, and I couldn’t replace you,” he said. “You’re the real King and I could never take your place. I don’t even want to. I just want to help keep us all safe. And if you don’t think my plan’s going to work, we can come up with a new one together.”

He shook his head. “Max, I know you and Michael are best friends, and I envy that. Rath and I were never close, and I never had a real friend besides Ava. I wasn’t trying to come between you and Michael. It was just nice to have a male friend who liked some of the same things.”

“And I had no idea you and Liz were together.” He turned to encompass Liz in his gaze. “I’m sorry, Liz. I kissed you and didn’t let you explain.” He met Max’s eyes. “I wasn’t trying to steal her from you,” he said. “I just didn’t know. I’m attracted to her, and wanted to get to know her better, but I thought she was free.”

Max felt the anger drain out of him as Zan explained. It had been a lot of misunderstandings and his insecurities that has fueled his rage. “I’m sorry too,” he said feeling ashamed. “I shouldn’t have said all that. I’m glad you’re here. You plan is great, and we need your help. I’ve just been on edge lately. I’m jealous as hell that you’re spending so much time with Liz, working on her powers. I’m the one who gave them to her and I can’t even help her.”

He sighed, looking at Liz beside him where she still gripped his arm. “Liz and I aren’t together,” he confessed to Zan, “not anymore, but I’m trying to convince her to come back to me.” His eyes met Zan’s. “That’s why I got so angry when I saw you kissing her.”

Zan nodded. He wondered what the situation was between them, but now wasn’t the time to ask.

He took one last look at Liz. He’d been so happy when he was kissing her, and now he just felt hopeless. He didn’t have a chance with the woman he loved.

He cocked his head toward Liz’s ladder. “I’m going to go,” he said with a last look at Liz. “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Liz met his eyes feeling so guilty. She hadn’t initiated the kiss between them but she had kissed him back. And she hadn’t said a word to Max. She had let Zan take the blame for everything.

She also felt for him. He had feelings for her and he’d thought there was a chance for something between them. “I’m sorry, Zan,” she whispered.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Zan felt hollow inside as he slowly moved toward the ladder. He’d been so sure that he and Liz belonged together. He’d never experienced anything close to what had happened with her; love at first sight, the instant connection, and Liz seeming to return his feelings. But somehow it was all wrong.

He swung his leg onto the top rung and looked back at the woman he loved. Her eyes met his and he could clearly see the tear-tracks on her cheeks. He smiled at her and started down.

It was like someone had jabbed a knife through his heart. Liz was kind-hearted, and she felt sorry for him, and that was the last thing he wanted from her.

When he’d gone about half-way down the ladder he heard Max’s voice, and it instantly stopped him. He knew it was wrong to listen to their conversation, but he was curious as hell about why Liz refused to be with Max.

Suddenly Zan’s heart started pounding again. Liz had never said she didn’t want to be with him. She’d held herself back when he kissed her, but finally responded. He was sure she wanted him, and maybe she’d been cautious because of her past relationship with Max

Max and Liz continued speaking and Zan listened intently. Emotions surged through him ranging from jealously to anger to confusion and finally curiosity. Obviously there was a lot more going on than he knew about.

What the fuck had been happening in this small town?


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Max waited until Zan disappeared over the edge to speak. “Liz, I’m so sorry. I know we aren’t together, but to see him kissing you nearly drove me crazy.” Tears started in his eyes. “It made me think that we’d never be together again, and I couldn’t stand it. I love you so much.”

More tears spilled down Liz’s cheeks. “Max,” she said, her voice rough with emotion, “we can’t be together, you know it.”

“Don’t say that,” he hissed, reaching up to cup her cheek and wipe away her tears with his thumb. “There’s a way and we’ll figure it out.”

“But Max,” she started, only to be cut off.

“Please don’t say it,” he begged softly. “Just let me hold you for a few minutes.”

Liz could see the pain and panic in his face and she couldn’t deny him. Against her better judgment, she nodded.

Instantly he enfolded her in his arms, and she hugged him tightly, closing her eyes and resting her head against his chest.

Liz sighed softly. It just wasn’t fair that it felt so perfect to be in his arms when it wasn’t meant to be.

After a moment Max spoke. “Tess did this,” he said harshly.

“What?” Liz asked confused.

Max explained, “She knew you and Zan were up here, and she set me up to find you. She sent me up here to see that kiss.”

Liz pulled away from him with wide eyes. “How did she know?” she asked, worried.

Max shrugged. “She said she heard you up here with him.”

He took a step closer to Liz intending to take her in his arms again, but she stepped back, shaking her head. “Don’t you see?” she asked horrified. “Tess is getting desperate. She’s trying to turn you against me. We have to do something, Max, or Tess will leave town.”

Max could see the panic in Liz’s eyes and he tried to calm her. He stroked her arms. “I’ll talk to her,” he said softly. “I’ll make her understand that we are going to be together.”

“No,” Liz said. “She won’t accept that. She still wants you.” More tears spilled down her cheeks. “Max,” she said sadly, “you have to be with her.”

Liz broke away from Max and started to pace, three steps one direction before whirling around and going three steps the other way. “How can this be happening?” she mumbled to herself. “After everything I did, it can’t fall apart. It can’t all end because of me. What am I going to do?” she asked, growing more agitated with every step. “How can I fix this? What am I going to do?”

Max was really beginning to worry now. He’d never see Liz like this. She looked almost wild. He started to have that nagging feeling again, but Liz’s distress pushed it from his mind. He stepped into her, taking her gently by the shoulders, making her look at him. “It’ll be okay,” he soothed. “I’ll make sure she doesn’t leave.”

Tears welled in Liz’s eyes as she looked into his face. She knew Max was concerned about her and that was the only reason he was trying to be nice to Tess. He didn’t really understand how important it was, but how could he. She hadn’t told him the whole truth. He didn’t know why it mattered so much.

“Max,” she said miserably, “I’m so scared.”

“I know,” he said, wrapping her in his arms and pressing a kiss to the top of her head, “but we’ll make sure it’s okay.”


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


Tess left the Crashdown just after Max did, following him around the building and into the alley. She watched him climb onto the balcony and a smile crossed her face as she heard him yelling. She wanted to get closer to hear exactly what was happening but she expected him to come angrily down the ladder any moment.

He would be devastated again, and she would be there for him to pick up the pieces of his broken heart.

But long moments passed, the angry voices died away, and no one came rushing down the ladder.

Tess stared at the edge of the balcony. What was happening?

She started forward, so she could hear the conversation above, but stopped when someone finally approached the ladder. And to her surprise she realized it was Zan.

What happened? she asked herself. Surely Max had caught Liz and Zan kissing, but he wasn’t leaving as she’d expected. Did Zan and Liz lie? Somehow explain it away. Or was Max so wrapped around Liz’s finger that he didn’t care that she was screwing every guy in town?

Tess thought Zan would leave, and then she could get closer and maybe hear the end of their conversation. But Zan only climbed down a few rungs and then stopped, obviously listening to Max and Liz.

Tess was angry that her plan didn’t work out like she’d hoped. But something was definitely going on between Zan and Liz, and she was going to use it to her advantage.


~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~


TBC
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