Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Ch 34 8/28

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 11

Postby Europolarist » Tue Mar 19, 2013 11:29 am

AN: Hopefully some answers are cleared up here, Carolyn!
Enjoy! SOrry it's a bit late, the computer at work hates me.

Chapter 11

Liz sat down in the booth of the dark bar, placing a frosted glass on a coaster and settling into the plush cushions. Looking around the room she noticed that it was darker than the last time she’d been here; but not terribly so.

There was a football game on the TV over the barista’s head. She didn’t remember the flat screen being there, but smiled that she’d at least have something to do while she waited.

“I hope you haven’t been waiting long.”

Liz turned to see Michael, dressed just as he had the first time she’d seen him here. Her insides melted as he leaned over and placed a chaste kiss against her cheek and sat down on the other side of the table.

“Not at all,” she smiled, feeling heat rush to her face. It was always so nice to see him, especially with that air of confidence around him that drew her to him like a moth to the flame.

“Are you excited about tonight?” he asked, reaching across the table.

“Of course,” she said, allowing him to take her hand. The rough skin on his thumb rubbed the back of her hand sending shivers through her body.

He took her hand and pulled her from the booth. Liz glanced down to see her outfit change into a slinky deep red ball gown, draped over her body like it’d been made for her. He pulled her close, flush against his chest and led them through the room in a dance.

“Liz!” a sharp yell echoed through her mind and Liz turned to see Michael, dressed in little more than athletic pants and a wife-beater.

She glanced back, her Michael still pulling her along the dance floor.

“What?” she panicked, pulling away from the body that had warmed her.

The Michael in the workout clothes raced across the room and pulled her tightly into his arms. His cologne immediately enveloped her, warming her very soul. Liz caught a hint of that faintly masculine scent that lingered after he’d worked out.

He’d managed, somehow, to actually visit her in her dream state. Shock rippled through her body at that thought.

“I’ve been looking for you for so long,” his voice cracked. “Are you hurt? Where are they keeping you?

“What do you mean?” she asked.

“I don’t have time to explain,” he said, pulling away from her.

“I know you’re an alien,” Liz said, carefully looking at him. He looked human, how could she have known that first day that he wasn’t anything but normal?

He nodded, not looking particularly surprised that she’d admitted it. But Liz noticed the grimace in his face before he continued speaking.

“You need to tell me where you are,” he repeated.

“I don’t know,” she cried.

“What do they look like?” he asked.

Liz forced herself to remember, but all she could think of were the doctors and nurses who’d covered everything but their eyes.

“I need more, Liz,” he begged.

“I don’t have,” she started. Then she remembered and pictured the man who’d come to her, trying to intimidate her through his uniform.

Michael cursed.

“I’ll get you out of there,” he promised. “You have to be strong. Just a few more days.”

Liz nodded and Michael disappeared.

Liz bolted up in her cot, her fingers digging into the thin mattress they’d given her. She struggled to catch her breath and calm her racing heart.

Since they’d stopped giving her the sedatives, Liz had been sleeping in the room they’d fashioned into an old prison cell. She didn’t know where she was and had no natural lighting because there weren’t any windows that she could see.

Thinking about the nightmare she’d just had, Liz wondered if it really had been Michael visiting her in her dreams. Could he really be the alien that the others insisted he was? If so, what had she gotten herself in to?

She missed the house on the estate and the friendship she was building with Serena. She wondered briefly, but pushed those thoughts away, if Maria and her family knew she was gone. She missed that feeling of intense happiness and lust she got when Michael would walk into the room, even though they never acted on it. At least not until the night of the blizzard and she’d run from the house as though he’d stolen her innocence.

As her breathing calmed, Liz knew in hindsight that she’d over reacted that night but it seemed like her current nightmare of being captured would not end. She couldn’t wake up and be in her four poster bed at the estate.

The unlocking of a heavy metal door sounded outside of her room, and Liz pictured the manila folder in her mind. Though it wasn’t enough to stop the forced mind reading they did, whatever mental block she’d been able to form with it helped them keep out of her most immediate thoughts on this side of the bars.

“Good morning, Liz,” the red-haired alien said, placing a tray of food on the small opening in the bars.

“Is it really morning?” Liz snarled back to her captors. No clock, no windows, not even a calendar at her disposal, Liz wouldn’t have been surprised if it was 8 pm instead of 8 am.

“Now now,” the alien scolded. “Is that any way to treat your friends?”

“You are not my friend,” she spat, still thinking of that folder.

“I think we could be great friends,” the woman lilted. “If you’d just give us what we want.”

“I don’t have the seal,” Liz insisted.

“You know enough about Michael and his powers to block your thoughts with that silly folder of yours,” she intimated, leaning against the far wall. “The information we need doesn’t even concern you. Why don’t you just give it up and we’ll let you go.”

“I’ve told you before. I don’t know about a King Zan or the clones or the granolith. I don’t know about these aliens.”

“But your work in The Second’s labs proves otherwise.”

“I was working on brain tissue samples for a cure for autism,” she said. It was the truth, at least in some part. The stem cell research she did for Michael had been the truly classified experiment. Truth be told, Liz now wondered what the stem cells had to do with these aliens. Had she been working with alien DNA without knowing it?

Liz covered her thoughts with a brick wall this time and glanced at the woman. They’d spoken about clones and betrayal and rightful heirs. She couldn’t process any of the information they seemed to think she was privy to.

The alien never once let on that she’d realized what Liz had accidentally thought. Maybe next time, Liz mused, she’d build a metal wall.

“Very well,” the alien sighed. “I had thought about offering you a shower if you cooperated, but now, I’m not in the mood.”

She walked away and Liz heard the door slam behind her. What sounded like metal gears clamped shut and she sighed. Even if she ever did get out of the cell, Liz knew she wouldn’t be able to manipulate that door.

He’d promised just a few more days.

Liz felt like weeping. Until the moment he’d appeared in her dreams, she’d had no clue that what her captors said was true. Without any proof other than their abilities, Liz couldn’t believe that Michael was different. Sure he was rich and elusive and so incredibly good looking; but a being from another planet, she just didn’t believe.

Until she’d smelled his familiar cologne when he’d hugged her tightly. Not even dream Michael had smelled like he should. But the Michael with bags under his eyes and hair that looked unwashed for days had immediately proven to her that he was different.

She thought back on the experiment in the Guerin private lab. The cells she’d seen there had been unlike any animal she’d known. His story was that the samples had been a previously unknown animal they’d discovered in the rain forest. It hurt that he hadn’t told her the truth; but if they were looking for cures for diseases on Earth, she knew that the media would be in a frenzy if they found out about the ‘alien’ DNA.

Who was she kidding? Liz scoffed at her own thoughts.

They’d been close to cloning that DNA in the hopes of replicating a drug reaction that the proteins had. It could potentially reverse the effects that UV rays had on skin. Liz sighed. Of course the alien race had immunity to the radiation of the sun. She smacked the palm of her hand on her head.

They weren’t cells from any known animal, they were cells from whatever Michael Guerin and his people were.

Liz felt like a good and proper idiot. But that brought up another thought that she’d repressed. If Michael really was an alien that meant there really was a King he was protecting. Liz knew then that she was in way over her head. Her captors spoke of the clones and she wondered, originally, if they knew of her experimentations; but they’d mentioned the cloning of Michael and his King in person. Did they have the ability to clone humans too?

As time passed that day, Liz started going over the memories she had of working in the lab. What pieces of information she could reevaluate with the realization that those things out in the hall were right. She wanted to figure out what exactly Michael had her doing.

Eventually one of the nurses returned with another meal tray and Liz sat quietly picturing the manila folder in her mind. She didn’t want to chance them seeing the revelations she’d made over the last few hours nor did she want them to know that Michael had visited her dreams.

“You’ve been quiet today,” the woman practically snarled under her face mask.

Liz shrugged, acting defeated.

“Maybe you’re ready to give us the Royal Seal?” she asked.

Liz shrugged again.

“Giving up?”

“Hardly,” she spat out.

“Very well.”

She placed a plate of tasteless food and a bottle of water in the opening.

“Enjoy your meal. It may be the last you get for a while.” The woman turned and stalked out of the room.

Liz sighed and walked over to the tray. She saw the familiar sandwich and apple sitting on the plate. Pulling the plate off the tray, Liz snatched the apple and put it at the foot of her bed with the other fruit they’d brought her.

With no proof that they had cameras on her, Liz had been storing the fruit and rolls that they’d give her, in case they stopped bringing her food. The fruit would last her a couple days, especially the oranges. The apples, she’d decided, would have to be eaten first, too delicate to survive for long outside of the cool fridge. What rolls she’d managed to pilfer were starting to go stale and she’d eaten one before going to bed last night. It had filled her up, but Liz knew she wouldn’t be able to hold out for long if indeed they did stop feeding her.

That ‘afternoon’ Liz concentrated on the image of the wall she’d built. If she could, Liz wanted to make it as strong as possible, though she didn’t know how. It was likely that the aliens who’d captured her were going to interrogate her again and read her mind. If she was able to, Liz hoped that this block she was imagining would stop any further explorations into her psyche. She did not want them finding out about Michael’s clandestine visit.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 12

Postby Europolarist » Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:25 am

AN: Sorry for the delay, I had some issues posting last week. But here it is! I hope you enjoy!!!
Chapter 12

That night when Liz finally fell asleep she prayed to God that Michael would visit her in her dreams again. What she needed more than anything was just to see him and wrap her arms around his waist. Just a few moments with him would give her the strength to fight the men tomorrow.

Tonight though, her mind seemed to know she was sleeping and Liz tossed and turned for hours. Dreams eluded her for the first time in days. It felt like she woke up every five minutes and she cursed the lack of REM cycles.

Eventually Liz gave up on the idea that sleep would cradle her. She sat up in bed and stared at the floor. There was nothing she could do but wait until they came to get her. Her left leg throbbed; the pain of the unset bone drew her back to the task at hand. She could survive a few more days and once she was back at the Guerin estate, they could pay for the surgery to fix the limp in her leg. After all it was kinda their fault anyway, she chuckled.

Freaking alien conspiracies.

Liz laughed.

The door at the end of the hall unlatched and Liz heard at least three sets of feet walking toward her.

Before they’d reached her, Liz had slammed down the wall she’d imagined. The best she came up with was the three foot thick wall that surrounded the estate, alarms and barbed wire included. On her side of the wall sat a safe room, with foot thick metal enforced walls, like something she’d seen on a movie. Inside were cameras and supplies that she would need for a week long hold out. She imagined booby traps at every level, poisoned spikes, razor sharp spear tips, anything that would keep them out. That’s all she needed, she could survive until Michael got here.

Two men, dressed in full surgical outfits and two women stopped at her cell. She almost chuckled, like they’d stop anywhere else. As far as she could tell, after weeks of captivity, she was the only prisoner.

Liz pictured herself climbing inside, a smile on her face and arming the facility. There would be no way they could get to her in there.

“What are you smirking at?” she heard one of the men ask as the bars opened.

Liz concentrated on the image she’d designed. They would get nothing today, no matter what. She couldn’t reveal anything to them.

One man grabbed her arm roughly, pulling her off the cot.

“She’s blocking pretty hard, sir,” a nurse said off in the distance.

Liz didn’t even think about answering them. She only thought about her fortress of cement, steel, and electricity.

She knew they dragged her through the main hall and into one of the labs where she’d woken up before, but she didn’t let her thoughts waver too far from the safe room. They could drug her and cut her open for all she cared, but she would not let them get anything else from her. Now that she knew the truth, that Michael really was an alien and had some higher purpose, she would not cater to these enemies of his.

They tied her to a bed with little resistance and she knew that it would confuse them after all the fighting she’d done the last time they put her there. They pinched her right forefinger with a blood pressure gauge and took off the flimsy medical gown they’d dressed her in, placing electrodes on her bare chest after cleaning the areas with alcohol.

A shiver coursed through her body.

She concentrated on that room.

She heard them talking, to her or to themselves, she didn’t care. There was no way they’d get anything from her today.

One of the men who’d carried her in, prepared a syringe and moved her arm so he could hit the vein. Liz ignored him.

Her world went black.

Liz felt her bed rocking, loud shrieking noises exploded in her head and she struggled to get her eyes to open. They just wouldn’t work. She cried out, terrified that they’d glued her eyes shut for whatever they’d planned. Could they be preparing her to be sent to outer space? At one time she’d wished to be an astronaut, to fly freely through space; but not like this. Never like this.

She struggled in her bonds and tried to remember the impenetrable room she’d imagined, but even her mind was blurry.

“Liz!” a voice shouted and she fought harder against the bonds.

Finally getting her eyes open, Liz was assaulted with red flashing alarm lights. A black figure stood above her, and she pulled her arm back. Whoever it was, was freeing her from the table.

“Thank you,” she said, her voice coming out in rasps. Everything was hazy around her, but she hoped her eyesight would return soon.

“We don’t have much time,” the man said. “Can you walk?”

The wafting scent of clean laundry shocked her.

Liz scooted off the edge and gingerly stepped on the ground, her leg screamed in pain.

“I don’t think so,” she grasped the man’s arm, quickly pulling her foot from the floor.

“Come here,” he said, and picked her up, piggy back style. “It’ll be faster this way.”

Liz wrapped her arms around his neck and nuzzled into his back, shielding her eyes from the strobe lights. She felt nauseous and the alarms weren’t helping. She bounced against his back as he raced through the halls, holding on as tightly as she could. His one arm wrapped around her waist from behind, keeping her against his back.

“Where’s Michael,” she asked, terrified that this was another kidnapping.

“He’s okay,” the man replied, speaking over his shoulder. “But please, I’ll answer your questions once we’re out of here. I need to concentrate on the path out.”

Liz settled her head against his neck and pictured the walled-in room once more, just in case. She couldn’t afford to lose everything she’d worked so hard to keep safe.

After an eternity of being carried through a maze, Liz was greeted with fresh air for the first time in months. The man burst through one last alarmed door and into a forest. The burst of air was cool but so much warmer than she’d been accustomed to.

“We’re almost there,” he said, reassuring her.

Liz glanced back to see where they’d escaped from, her eyes finally clearing up. Lifting her head, Liz saw a round opening in a wall of rocks.

Loud whooshing noises filled the air and Liz looked over the strong man’s shoulder to see a helicopter waiting for them. She almost cried out with joy when she saw Michael and Serena inside. The man put her down and helped her into the open door then climbed into the helicopter. Michael reached for her and pulled her in, wrapping her body in his arms.

“Did you get the communicator?” her rescuer asked Michael.

Liz looked over at him, what communicator?

“There wasn’t time,” Michael replied, rubbing his arm along her back. “I had other things to worry about.”

The man sighed.

“Let’s go,” he said, glancing over his shoulder toward the pilot.

As soon as the helicopter door was shut, Liz felt the machine lift off the air.

Liz bawled into Michael’s shoulder, thankful for the rescue and so happy to be free again.

“I found her in one of the labs,” the mystery man said, strapping himself into a seat. Getting her first proper look at him, Liz recognized him from somewhere but couldn’t remember where she’d seen him.

“Not now, Zan,” Michael growled.

Liz pulled away from Michael, attempting to stand, and looked at the man who’d saved her. This man was Zan?

The King had come to rescue her himself?

“Come sit down, Liz,” Michael said, pulling her over to the bench.

“Lizzie,” Serena said. Liz looked over to see tears in her friend’s eyes. “I’m so happy we found you.”

“Thank you, Serena,” she said, reaching out for her hand. “I can’t even begin to explain.”

“You don’t have to,” Michael said, stopping her. “We can talk later, after you’ve rested. Let’s just get home.”

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 13

Postby Europolarist » Thu Mar 28, 2013 1:14 pm

AN: Carolyn and Sarah, thanks for the feedback! Enjoy this chapter. It's short, but I hope you like it.

Chapter 13

The next afternoon, Liz found herself sitting in her bed. They’d let her sleep all morning and the rest in the bed had been welcoming. Michael and Zan were sitting on a couch they’d brought in from the living room and Serena leaned up against the headboard.

They’d gone all out and made Liz a full breakfast, which now sat on a tray on her lap.

“Thank you,” she said, again. Barely eating some toast and some of the egg, she was already full, but didn’t want to appear ungrateful.

“You don’t have to keep saying that,” Serena smiled, tucking a lock of jet black hair behind her ear. “You would have done the same for us.”

“I know but…”

Liz stared at Zan, sitting on a chair nearby. There was something familiar about the man, his tattoos and piercings were wilder than anything she’d seen before. She was surprised that this guy was the one the aliens had been after. Realization dawned on her in the quiet of the room.

“Max?” she asked, his face merging with the youth she’d seen in the picture on Michael’s desk. Was this the same man?

“No,” he said, looking almost sad as he shook his head. “I’m just Zan.”

“But you look,” she started, then caught a ghost of a head shake from the so-called King. Apparently this was not the time to talk about it, she closed her mouth.

“Liz,” Zan said, sitting up a bit, grunting with the shifting. “Do you think you’re ready to tell us what happened?”

“Zan,” Michael scolded, looking sharply at the other man. Liz saw his eyes flash daggers at his King. She didn’t know much about the alien society; but if Zan really was a king then Michael probably had no right to be so forceful.

“It’s alright,” she said, forcing a smile. “The sooner I get the entire story out into the open the better.”

Liz glanced at Serena before turning to Michael.

“It’s okay,” Serena said, placing a hand on Liz’s thigh. “I know the truth about our benefactor. He told me enough eventually.”

Liz nodded; she didn’t really feel like dropping that bomb on her friend. She wondered what happened when Michael admitted to being an alien to the newly obsessed UFOlogist.

“Do you need to record this?” she asked, looking at Zan. “I don’t know if I will be able to repeat all this again.”

“We can, if you’d prefer; but Michael and I have photographic memories, for lack of a better term,” he shrugged. “It’s not necessary.”

“Can you just take my memories then?”

“No,” Zan said catching her eye for a fleeting moment, seeming to catch her meaning. “That is not something we can do.”

The air was tense in the bedroom. Liz nodded, noting his phrasing, and braced herself for the pain ahead.

For the next two hours Liz relayed every memory she had of the ordeal. Every time she spoke about one of the beings, she’d make sure to catch Zan’s eye. Occasionally he’d shake his head and she’d skip forward, knowing whatever she was telling them had an extra level of security around it.

About half way through her tale, Serena left the room in tears. Liz didn’t blame her friend for leaving, it had been a nightmare.

With Serena gone, Liz elaborated on some of the more alien aspects of her torture. She spoke of every test they gave her, every question they asked and every meal they skipped during the week they tried to starve her answers out of her. Liz relayed all of her thoughts and finally the building of her imaginary room. Liz told them every detail she could, wanting them to know exactly how bad this group wanted the man that sat before her.

When she’d finished, the room was silent. The only noise that could be heard was the ticking of the analog clock she kept over the doorframe.

“Liz,” Zan said, standing. “I can’t begin to tell you how sorry we are for everything that you endured these last couple of months. You should never have been put through the agony and pain that those monsters put you through. If there’s anything I can do to help, please come to me.”

Liz glanced over at Michael, who’d been eerily quiet during her narration. His jaw was clenched tight, but he said nothing.

“Can I ask a question?” Liz said, looking at Zan. “What happened to the aliens?” she gestured outside.

“They are gone,” he said, diplomatically, avoiding her eyes.

“How gone?” she insisted.

“We killed them, Liz,” Zan said, attempting to comfort her by placing his hand on her knee. “Every one that we could find.”

Liz nodded, not sure she wanted to dwell on the fact that her benefactors had murdered all of them.

“Can you explain this whole thing to me?” she asked. “The mark and the things they said about you being a King?”

“There are things that I would love to tell you,” Zan said. “But I think it’s better if we hold off for now. I have some questions that need to be answered before we should share everything.”

Liz caught Michael glaring at his King.

“I think,” Michael said, speaking for the first time in nearly an hour. “That Liz deserves the whole truth after everything she’s gone through for us.”

She was grateful to him for sticking up for her, but didn’t say a word.

“I never said that,” Zan sneered at his friend.

Liz backed against her headboard, fearful at the anger that radiated between the two men.

Zan sighed.

“What I can tell you now is that the mark they thought you had was something that only a few people are allowed to possess, and pass on, including Michael and I. It’s a badge of sorts,” Zan said, twisting his hands in the air.

“I thought the mark would protect me? I mean that’s what they kept saying; the mark was your seal of protection.” She looked carefully at the two men, feeling uncomfortable even in the safety of her own bedroom.

“It does have some protective qualities, but not in the way they probably believe,” Zan said, in an uneasy tone. “When the seal is passed on, it grants a link between those that carry it, opening a sort of a telepathic connection when we’re close enough.

“That mental mark, the reason why they wanted it, is the only way someone can access some of the most well guarded aspects of our lives.”

“Like your research?” she asked, interrupting him.

“The research is only a small part of what we do,” he quickly said. “And unfortunately, without the consent of a majority of us, I can’t tell you any more than that.”

“How many is a majority?”

“The ones that count? About ten of us.”

Liz nodded, unsure that she wanted to know who all was in on this big secret.

“What’s going to happen now?” Liz asked.

“I have no reason to keep you in the dark now. You’ve more than proven yourself trustworthy; but until I get the other members together and speak to them, I don’t know.”

“You’re the King, Zan. You have the power to tell her anything you want.”

Zan only glared at Michael and Liz kept her mouth shut, there were politics here that she didn’t understand.

“What happens to me until then?”

“You stay here and get better,” Michael said, suddenly.

“And if I don’t want to?”

“Liz,” Zan said, stopping Michael’s response. “This compound is still the safest place for you to be. It’s only when you left that you were caught.”

“So, I’m a prisoner here now?”

“No,” Zan said, his voice low and apologetic. “I know you don’t really trust us right now,” Zan said, moving to the couch. “But I’m asking you to wait before making any rash decisions.”

“You’re right. I don’t,” Liz said, glaring at him. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’d like to have some privacy so I can get some rest.”

Michael nodded, and without another word stormed out of the room.

“Here,” Zan said, picking up the tray and putting it on her nearby nightstand. “I’m sorry about this. But I promise I’ll have your answer tomorrow morning. I just can’t risk the safety of the others without their consent.”

Liz nodded, wordlessly.

As Zan walked out of her room, Liz pulled back the covers, wanting to go to the bathroom. She needed to face the truth of the extent of her injuries, she needed to see for herself what her alien captors had done to her.

Stepping onto the carpeted floor, her leg collapsed under her. Liz cried out in pain, having forgotten about the broken bones that throbbed in the background of her mind.

Zan rushed in first, and saw her crumpled on the floor.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, lifting her carefully off the floor.

She didn’t bother answering him as Zan saw the state of her leg in the light.

Michael and Serena walked into the room and Liz groaned.

“I didn’t even realize your leg was this bad,” Zan muttered. “Why didn’t you say anything, last night? This looks painful.”

“It is, but you had other concerns,” she said, biting back some of her scathing anger.

Zan put her back on the bed and Liz caught the look that exchanged between the two aliens.

“Let me heal this for you,” Zan said.

“Can you do that?” Serena asked, walking toward the bed.

“Liz, will you let me heal this?” Zan asked, looking down at her. Liz nodded, despite her mistrust, at least she wouldn’t be in pain any more.

“This might hurt a bit,” Zan said.

Zan looked over at Michael and Liz turned her head to see what was going on. Michael just shrugged. There was an intense heat against her leg and Liz glanced down again.

She glanced up and saw his deep brown eyes looking at hers.

Liz watched as a bright light glowed from his hand like a beacon. He pressed his hand to her ankle and ran it slowly up her leg. The juxtaposition between the hot heat that emanated and the now cold-feeling air sent a shiver through her.

“There,” he said.

Liz looked down and saw the bruises gone; the bump where her bone was misaligned was gone.

“You healed me?” she asked, surprised that he’d put himself out there with as much dodging as the two men had been doing all morning.

“We owe you more than I could ever imagine, Liz,” Zan said. “It’s the least I could do.”

“So, what else can you do?” she asked, willing to put a peace between them, at least temporarily.

“Those of us that carry the mark share our powers,” Zan stared, sounding a little reluctant to answer her questions. “What one of us can do, all of us can do. But we each have a specialty. My forte is healing.”

Zan looked over at Michael expectantly.

“My powers are based on more physical things,” Michael said, after a moment. “Like blasting through walls and building shields, physical and mental. When I visited your dreams, I had my sister with me. Her specialty is dreamwalking, combining her powers with mine, we were able to find your dreams and break into them.”

Liz nodded, the information making her queasy.

“We’ll give you some time,” Zan said, moving to stand up. “I promise I’ll have your answers soon.

The two men and Serena walked silently out of the room and Liz burst into tears, the hold on her emotions finally splintering in the loneliness of the bedroom.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 14

Postby Europolarist » Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:30 am

AN: Thanks for the feedback! Lurkers, thanks for reading! Just a little update, April might be slow or late as far as posting goes. I'm taking part in Camp NaNoWriMo and most of my writing time is taken up trying to reach my daily word count.
PS Enjoy this chapter :wink:

Warning: Adult actions in this chapter, please skip if you are not yet 18

Chapter 14

The next few days were strange for Liz. The trio of her saviors refused to let her do any work while she recovered from the abduction. Though Serena went to the lab and worked a few hours here and there, her friend stayed by her side as much as needed. When Serena had some work to do, Michael would immediately come over and sit with her.

No one let Liz put one finger to work, insisting that no matter that Zan healed her, she still needed rest.

Though it was awkward knowing that two of her newest friends were not from the planet, Liz found herself quickly becoming comfortable with the fact that they were always there. She knew they must have other business dealings that were being put off; but they were never further than five minutes away. Zan made sure that he was never alone with her and Liz realized that he wanted to avoid her questioning as much as she wanted the answer. Liz, for her part, didn’t bother asking about the progress of the approvals. If he really had the approval of their council or whatever, Zan would be the first to admit it.
She knew she couldn’t ask her questions with Serena nearby and Michael doting on her every need, wouldn’t let Zan close.

One evening, about a week after she’d returned to the estate, the two men came over to eat dinner with Liz and Serena. Liz, sitting at the table and feeling somewhat normal again, finally got the nerve to ask her questions again.

Coffee and dessert had just been finished. Liz placed her fork next to her plate and looked around. They had a comfortable little circle now, the two female humans and the two male aliens, but she needed to let them get back to their regular lives. And the tension waiting for the approval of their compatriots was enough to make her insane.

“I want to thank you guys and Serena for helping me these last few days,” she said, suddenly. “I’ve appreciated the space you’ve let me have and the care you’ve taken of me, but I’m guessing there are other things that need to be put in order. So please, tomorrow morning go back to whatever it was you were doing before I ruined everything.”

“Liz,” Michael said, having finally warmed up to her. “You haven’t ruined anything.”

“You helped us,” Zan continued. “Despite the horrors that occurred in the mountain, you helped us take them out. We’ve been looking for that cell for years.”

“Will you want to return to work?” Michael asked, after a moment.

“As long as you promise no more lies,” Liz said, staring harshly at her boss. “I need to know the truth if you really want my help.”

“One hundred percent,” Zan promised. “I have consent of the council to answer whatever you need.”

“I think Serena needs to be in on EVERYthing as well,” she said, looking carefully at her house mate. “And if that seal does what you say it does, we need to seriously talk about having it passed to both of us. It’s clear that we need that protection.”

“I can’t do that,” Zan said.

“Why not? The other aliens seemed to think I was worthy of the seal,” she said, pushing away from the table.

“Wait,” Michael called out, reaching for her.

“I can’t give you the seal,” Zan repeated. “Because to pass on the seal means that one of us has to die.”

“Die?” Liz asked looking over the table.

The King nodded, wordlessly.

“The seal is less complicated than the Skins, the aliens who took you, believe.”

Michael sighed and asked Zan if he was sure he wanted to do this.

Zan nodded.

“The seal belongs to the Royal Four, the complete unit of Royals on our planet. Without the set of four rulers, it is said that war will consume the planet. Michael and I, we’re,” he paused, thinking of how to say whatever it was he had to say.

Liz squirmed in her seat wondering what could be so bad.

“We are clones,” he continued. “For lack of a better parallel. Michael was born to one set of royal DNA and I was born to the other. Each set had the DNA of the Royal Four of Antar inside them.”

“I don’t understand,” Serena said. “You’re clones?”

“In a way, yes. Our essences, memories, DNA, souls, were split and harvested from our original bodies during a war on our home planet one hundred years ago. In order to ensure the proper people would be returned to power in time, these two sets of incubation pods were sent some place safe, a place that our people had considered safe for millennia.”

“Earth?” Serena asked, her voice quiet with awe.

Zan nodded.

“The two sets were separated, in hopes that if one group was discovered, the other would be a failsafe and be able to return to Antar. Only one set was granted the seals, and when my watcher found out, I was betrayed.

“Betrayed how?” Serena asked.

“My watcher, feeling duped, took our fourth member, the clone of Michael’s sister, and went back to Antar, leaving Ava and I for dead. I guess he felt that if he didn’t have the true royals, then he would be taking some reassurance back to negotiate a trade. Michael’s clone died during the incubation.”

“Who’s Ava?” Liz asked.

“She is my sister, both in this life and our last one. We were left just after breaking out from our pods, essentially with the abilities of newborns, in the gutters of New York City.”

“How did you find Michael then?” Liz asked.

“He found us,” Zan said. “Just after Max was sent back to Antar ten years ago. Tess was supposed to go with him, as Ava’s clone; but Tess died in a car accident just a few days before Max left.”

“That’s terrible,” Liz said, looking at Michael. He looked sad, almost depressed as Zan talked about this.

“Wait a minute, if you’re Zan, then that means Michael’s friend Max is your clone?” Liz asked.

Zan nodded.

The words of the skins echoed through her mind. The situation was beginning to make more sense.

“So what do your enemies want?”

“It looks like the Skins are onto the plan. Either they finally figured out the seal or they just want to kill those of us remaining on Earth, so the seals pass to Max and Lonnie for sure. Who knows what they’d do after that.”

“How do you know for sure which one of you has the seal?” Liz asked.

“We don’t,” Zan said. “All we know is that there are four of us left on the planet, two of whom are sure to have the seal, Michael and Ava, because of the deaths of their twins. And from what you’ve told us, our enemies are looking to kill us. Probably taking the Antarian throne for themselves.”

“So, how old are you?” Liz asked, the subject getting far too heavy for her tastes.

“We were housed in incubation pods when our watchers landed on Earth. They kept us in stasis for forty years, until our parents believed the planet would need us. We came out of the pods in 1989 looking like five year olds.”

“So you’re really like… seventy years old then?”

“Technically I suppose we are, but on Antar even a hundred years older we’d probably look the same as we do now. The lengths of our lives are considerably longer than that of humans.”

“In any case,” Zan continued, “we’re aging normally, though we’ll more than likely outlive many of our employees by decades.”

“When will you go back?” Liz asked, suddenly less hopeful of anything happening between her and Michael.

“There’s no guarantee either way. If Max dies, the seal is mine for sure and I’d have to take the crown. Michael’s only obligation is to return to his place as the King’s second, if Max or I dies.”

Liz froze, Zan’s words suddenly clearing up her mind. Michael was Zan’s failsafe, whatever he was in this life; he was also in line for whatever throne was waiting for them back on Antar. This life, on Earth, it was just keeping them in stasis until they were told to return home. How horrible it would be to live like that.

“Any more questions?” Zan asked, with a smile.

“Not right now,” Liz said. Serena shook her head.

“I’ll clear off the table then,” Zan offered. Serena stood to help him and Liz started to get up. No matter what he’d just admitted about his royal heritage, Liz still found it strange that the tattooed kid from the gutters of New York was offering to clear the table.

“Stay,” Zan ordered, looking at Liz.

“You do sound like a King,” Serena said, laughing as she took Liz’s plate and followed Zan to the kitchen.

“You okay?” Michael asked when the room was empty.

“As well as could be expected, I guess,” Liz sighed.

“I know it’s a lot of information. I’m sorry you were pulled into this.”

“Not your fault,” she said, automatically. Then burst out laughing, it had been almost entirely his fault and she saw that he was chuckling.

Tears were falling down her cheeks when Zan and Serena came back in the room.

“I think she might have lost her mind,” Michael said, with a laugh.

When her laughing fit subsided, Liz apologized to her friends, hardly able to believe that she’d laughed herself into a frenzy.

“Well, it seems like the old Ms. Parker has finally returned,” Serena smiled.

When they moved to the couch to watch a recently released movie, Liz noticed just how closely Serena sat to Zan. Liz plopped down between the two guys herself, but Serena sat on the other side of the would-be king and actively cuddled with him. His arm was wrapped around her shoulder.

She wondered what the skins knew that made them sure that it was Zan who had the mark. They hadn’t said a word to her about Max. Did they know something that Zan didn’t? Shaking her head of the thought, Liz sighed. She was beginning to sound like the DeLuca women and their conspiracy theories.

Liz glanced at Michael and motioned over to their friends in the darkness. He looked around her shoulder and looked back at Liz, shrugging as if he had no idea. Liz sighed and felt Michael reach around her back and pull her in close, allowing her to cuddle into his chest. Her stomach fluttered at his embrace but she knew better than to count her chickens so to speak.

Waking up sometime after the movie had ended and the screen looped through the menu music, Liz looked up to see Michael watching her intently.

“Let’s get you into bed,” he whispered.

Liz nodded and moved enough for him to get up. He reached his hand out for her and helped her off the couch. Pulling her gently behind him, Michael led the way back to her bedroom.

Closing the door behind them he waited until Liz had made her way over to the bed and he followed her over.

She didn’t say a word, wondering what he wanted. The room was warm, but she didn’t move to take off the yoga pants or the camisole that she’d worn for the casual dinner.

He reached over and pulled back her covers motioning for her to lie down. She scooted into the bed and heard his jeans fall to the floor. Not wanting to ruin the moment, Liz kept her back turned to him, afraid to look him in the eye, despite the darkness around them. Liz felt him climb in behind her. He settled in and pulled her flush against his body, spooning on their sides. She sighed at the warmth he provided and the comfort he gave her. His arm was wrapped around her waist and his hand splayed against her stomach, kindly on the outside of her clothes.

The next time she woke up, Liz felt hot breath against her neck. She shivered as she felt Michael pressing kisses against her bare skin. Fighting the urge to pull away in shock, she left well enough alone. He kissed just under her earlobe and Liz moaned when he pulled the skin into his mouth, raking his teeth lightly over the sensitive skin.

The sky outside her window was just starting to take on a pink tone and Liz knew it was morning. She wondered how long he’d been running his fingers over her body and kissing her.

His hand snaked around her waist again and pushed her stomach, causing her to press her butt against his hips. She could feel a hardness twitch between her cheeks and grinned secretly. Despite everything, he wanted her just as much as she wanted him, and his reactions were completely human.

She wondered how long it would take for him to realize that she was awake.

He kissed back down her neck and across her shoulder blade, leaving tiny stinging bites on her skin.

She moved her hips slightly, reveling in the fact that he moaned. His hand snaked under the hem of her shirt and teased its way up her stomach and brushed against the underside of her breast.

Flipping over suddenly, Liz glared at him, trying to keep up the premise that she was angry. He immediately pulled away, looking frightened. She noticed that his shirt had come off at some point during the night.

“Now, now,” she said. “You may be friends with a King, but you still need to ask permission.”

His shoulders slumped as he relaxed; no longer terrified that she was going to kick him from the room but saddened that she’d stopped his actions. Liz smiled at him and pushed his shoulder to lay back flat on the bed. He raised an eyebrow and smirked as she straddled his legs, careful of the throbbing member just in front of her. Her hands lingered on his chest.

It had been years since she’d been this close to a man and she intended to enjoy it. Alien or not.

Liz leaned down and kissed him, pressing her lips hard against his and letting her tongue search for his. His cock twitched against her stomach and he opened his mouth for her. Liz moaned as his hands traveled up her covered legs and tried once again to get under her shirt.

She sat up and pulled her camisole off, shivering a little in the cool air of the bedroom.

Michael gasped underneath her and though it took a moment for her to get the nerve to look at him, Liz was pleasantly surprised to see him regarding her in awe. His hands traveled slowly up her stomach, the lightness of his touch tickling slightly as he moved to cup her breast in one hand.

His hand engulfed her and for a moment she felt ashamed of the small size, but he leaned up and placed a feathered kiss on her pebbled nipple.

He moaned as his tongue snaked out and drew circles around the dusky skin.

Liz returned a moan of her own and ground herself into his hips. His tongue laved against her breast while his other hand groped the free one, warming the skin. Michael left a trail of kisses as he moved to her collar bone, teasing the skin in the small cleft.

Her hand snuck between them and Liz took hold of his throbbing shaft, squeezing just a bit to make him shudder. She stroked the length a few times but knew that she didn’t want to wait long before he was inside her.

“Your pants,” he whispered, leaving hot kisses along her neck.

She chuckled slightly and slid off his legs, taking her pants and underwear off before him for the first time. Then unsure of what to do, she waited, kneeling at his side, nervously.

He held her there for a moment and reached his fingers between her legs, teasing the skin and slowly moving toward her lower lips. It was like he was exploring a woman for the first time, not just her, but a woman in general as he caressed her skin in awe. She could feel the moisture pooling at her heat and his fingers easily slipped between her lips. He teased the hot skin, rubbing the flat of a finger along her pulsing clit before moving further between her legs.

“Oh, Liz,” he moaned.

She spread her knees a little further apart and was hit hard with the scent of her arousal. Suddenly incredibly embarrassed and excited, she waited for him to say something.

“Do I have permission to touch now?” he asked with a smirk as he sat up fully on the mattress.

Liz blushed and nodded. This was it, she thought.

He chuckled and flipped her over on her back, her head at the foot of the bed. His fingers played between her folds as he kissed her stomach and moved his body against hers.

Reaching up, Liz grasped his arms and pushed herself against his deft fingers. His exploration was more arousing than she’d ever guessed. Somehow she’d missed when he’d taken off his pants and boxers and she felt the soft skin around his cock brush between her thighs.

He spread her legs with his knee and hovered over her for a few seconds.

“Are you sure?” he asked, his voice shaking slightly.

She nodded, unable to trust her voice. Liz wanted him, no matter what.

The bulbous head pressed against her wet lips, sliding against her skin, looking for her opening. He pushed forward and Liz sighed, feeling the pressure of his cock as it slid inside her. Inch by slow inch, Liz felt her walls stretch around him.

Her fingers dug into his back. Had she been capable of thought, Liz would have known she was leaving harsh red scratches in his skin.

Suddenly, he surged forward, his entire length entering her as he settled on top of her.

Liz bit her tongue to keep from crying out in pleasure. She felt full, and for the first time in probably ever, she felt filled to the brim.

He pulled slowly out and Liz felt her walls clench around him, fighting his departure. She whimpered and he smiled. Again he pressed inside her, and slowly pulled out again. He feels amazing, Liz thought, moaning at the sensations.

She parted her lips letting out a shuddering breath as he sped his ministrations up slightly.

“Liz,” he moaned, moving over her smoothly.

Looking up at him, Liz saw his eyes closed tightly. She rotated her hips and met each thrust as he continued sliding in and out of her tight passage.

He pulled away suddenly, leaving her body chilled.

“Flip over,” he said, with the hint of an order on his breath. Liz flipped and let her lover put her in position.

He slid home again, hands resting on her butt cheeks, and began thrusting, this time hitting her sweet spot dead on. Over and over again. Liz felt the tingling low in her gut as his balls slapped against her clit. She screamed into the pillow as he pounded into her. Her fingers tightly holding the pillow over her mouth.

Just as she felt her walls clench tightly around his shaft, the rush of her orgasm hitting her, Liz felt Michael still as his fingers gripped her hips. His cock throbbed within her as he came mere seconds after she’d exploded. After he finished, Michael began moving his hips again. Her walls fluttered around him, in an attempt to milk him dry.

“Michael,” she whispered, the feeling in her toes gone.

He pushed harder into her, and Liz moaned.

Leaning forward, he pressed his chest against her back and whispered in her ear.

“Are you ready for round two,” he asked, a chuckle in his throat.

*~*~*~*
Liz woke up alone in her bed. Feeling panicked she quickly climbed out and grabbed her mid-thigh length robe and dressed. She felt sore moving around the room and she worried where Michael was. He’d been as exhausted as she when they’d finished early this morning.

Hearing noises in the living room, she tied the robe around her waist and walked out into the hall. Pots banging in the kitchen, Liz headed over to see Michael and Serena cooking food.

“Morning, sunshine,” Serena said, spying Liz. There was a knowing grin on her face and Liz wondered what Michael had told her.

“What time is it?” she asked, feeling suddenly uncomfortable.

“2,” Serena said. “Looks like stud muffin here wore you out.”

“Serena,” Liz hissed at her friend, her face heating with a flush.

“It’s about time,” Serena smiled. “I’m happy for you.”

“Made some brunch,” Michael said. “Though it’s technically too late for that too.”

“It smells wonderful,” Liz admitted.

The room was silent, and Liz remembered what she’d been thinking when she’d woken up. She glanced at Serena, who quickly took the hint and disappeared into her bedroom.

“We didn’t use protection last night,” Liz said, wanting it out in the open.

“I’m clean,” Michael said, leaning against the counter. He folded a dishtowel and held onto it in his hands for a few moments before continuing. “You don’t have to worry, Liz.”

“I could get pregnant,” she said, suddenly feeling tears welling in her eyes.

“It’s not close to your fertile time,” Michael replied.

“How would you know?” Liz struggled to keep her voice even.

“I can feel subtle changes in your temperature,” he said.

“But,”

“When I was younger, I did a lot of research on women’s cycles. I mean,” he paused. “I don’t even know if we’re compatible. But when I was fifteen or so, I wanted to be sure when I did take that step that I would know.”

“Take the step?”

“Liz,” he sighed. “This morning was my first time.”

“But, you were so confident, so sure of yourself,” she started.

Michael shrugged.

“Not once in my nearly thirty human years have I ever had sex with anyone.”

“I didn’t realize,” Liz replied, suddenly feeling incredibly stupid. “Why not?”

“I never planned to wait this long, but I didn’t want to just lose myself to the first floozy who heard I had money.” He crossed the room and wrapped her in his arms. “We can talk more about it later. But you don’t have to worry.”

“This isn’t over,” she said, weakly. Had he not been pressed against her, Liz knew the rumble that rolled through her stomach would have echoed through the room.

“I know,” Michael pulled away, placing a kiss on her cheek. “You are hungry though.”

Serena returned up a few minutes later and Liz wondered if her friend had listened in on the conversation. She was feeling a little lost and uncomfortable and wasn’t sure what to say. Last night had been incredible, so much so that she’d never guessed Michael was a virgin. That and the fact that he wasn’t sure they were compatible to have children. What had she gotten herself into?

Liz remained silent and ate the French toast and eggs and bacon that Serena and Michael had prepared.

She knew that he cared for her, that much was obvious. He’d sent his King, one of them anyway, to help hunt for her after she’d been abducted by the Skins. He’d brought her to his home to protect her and when she’d left foolishly she’d gotten herself into trouble. Liz knew that she had a lot of thinking to do.

After eating, Michael left Liz and Serena for the afternoon, but not without leaving her with a kiss. A heated, toe-curling kiss, but a goodbye for now kiss nonetheless.

When the girls were alone again in their home, Liz settled down into the couch.

“So, truthfully,” Serena said, walking into the room. “How was it?”

“Amazing,” Liz sighed. “More than anything I ever had or dreamed I could have.”

“Poor, Kyle,” Serena chuckled. “It keeps getting better.”

“What?”

“The sex,” she said. “I don’t know if it’s the alien genes or just these guys, but it’s amazing.”

“How long have you and Zan been,” Liz asked, motioning back and forth with her hands.

“About a week. Right around the time we got you back,” Serena admitted, sitting on the loveseat. “He was very understanding and comforting. One thing led to another and…”

Serena trailed off with a shrug.

“You had sex with him right after finding out about his situation?” Liz asked.

“I didn’t mean to, but Zan was just,” she sighed. “Besides, it’s not like it sucked.”

“How are you handling it?” she asked, her worries returning. “All the news they gave us yesterday.”

“I’m not,” Serena said. “Not really. I mean, he could leave any day if Max was suddenly killed. So we’re taking it one day at a time.”

“But?”

“But I could see myself falling desperately in love with that man, alien or not.”

Liz nodded, she could feel herself already falling for Michael. What would she do if he was called away? She had no idea.

It wasn’t until that evening that Michael returned to the house. He’d even called to make sure he was welcome. Liz had chuckled at his nerves, but was thankful to know that she wasn’t the only one afraid of the unknown.

Serena had gone to the main house in the hopes of spending some time with Zan and Liz was grateful for the time she’d have to ask Michael some questions. She was curious about the studies he’d done and how he knew for certain that they were compatible to begin with.

Europolarist
Enthusiastic Roswellian
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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 15

Postby Europolarist » Mon Apr 08, 2013 8:34 am

AN: Thanks so much for the feedback, faithful readers!!! I had debated at first about the virgin thing, but in the end, I figured someone as guarded as Michael had been, wouldn't have risked it. Though Zan... well... :twisted:

Please don't kill me after this chapter. There's still lots to come, I promise.

For those wondering: an update on nano. I'm 17,013 words in!!! Woohoo!


Chapter 15

It was the beginning of summer, hot already in the high altitudes of the mountains, when Zan made an announcement. He was bringing the rest of the Royal Four to the compound so Liz and Serena would officially meet Isabel and Ava. There hadn’t been any sightings from his contacts that the Skins, an almost derogatory term that Zan used to name their enemies, were still around and he thought it would be okay to have the two sisters return to the estate. Liz learned, through conversations with Michael, that his parents were the watchers assigned to his group of clones and when Zan’s watcher left for Antar John and Elena worked hard to find the others in case any of the four survived.

Nerves fluttered through Liz as she smoothed the tank top across her stomach. She was waiting for Zan and Michael to take them to the heli-pad where the girls would be landing in just a few minutes. They could easily walk over, but Zan doted over Serena and insisted that the guys take them over.

Serena paced the kitchen.

“Okay,” Liz said suddenly. “We have to stay calm.”

“But,” Serena started.

“No.” Liz took a deep breath. “If we don’t, we’ll have heart attacks before they even get here.

Serena agreed and forced herself to sit on a nearby chair.

“What if they don’t like us?” she asked. “What if they make Zan and Michael send us away?”

“They’d never do that,” Liz replied, hearing the door to their house open.

“They’ll be here in ten minutes or so,” Zan announced. “You ladies ready?”

Liz nodded then slipped into her sandals and followed the guys out into the warm June air. She climbed in the back of the golf cart with Serena and Zan took them to the pad, located on the other side of the estate. Even after five months in the compound, Liz couldn’t believe how large this tract of land was.

It didn’t take long for them to reach the area where the helicopter would arrive and soon enough Liz heard the beating hum of the blades as it neared the compound.

A sleek black ‘copter landed in the middle of the pad, smoothly and effortlessly. In the pilot seat, Liz recognized the man as the pilot who’d flown them from the hideout. Was it possible, a fleeting thought raced through her mind, that he knew their secret as well?

Liz grabbed hold of her shirt as the wind generated by the blades gusted past them. Once the propellers slowed, the door opened and two women stepped out from their ride.

The short blonde one quickly ran to Zan, wrapping her arms around him in a warm hug, the pink streak in her hair immediately marking her as Ava. Liz could hear Serena mumble in jealousy under her breath.

“Relax,” Liz laughed. “It’s his sister.”

“I know, but she’s so damn gorgeous with that punk rocker look.”

Liz sighed, and watched as the taller, leggier woman wrapped her arms around Michael and embraced him. Even though she’d chopped her hair off and colored it brown, Liz immediately recognized the woman as the one she’d seen at Yamamoto’s back in October.

When their hellos had been said, Michael and Zan introduced their sisters to Liz and Serena. Liz found it awkward but was happy to see the genuine appreciation the sisters had for the two women who, according to Isabel, had stolen their brothers’ hearts.

“We are so sorry about those damn Skins, Liz,” Isabel said, as they climbed onto the golf cart.

Liz only nodded.

“We tried for weeks to contact you,” she continued.

“I know,” Liz said, remembering Michael’s conversation about the dream walking that Isabel had done with him. “I’m grateful that you were able to get to me when you did though. I’ve told Michael this, but I know that my life was about to make a turn for the worse when your brother and Zan showed up that night.”

The rest of the drive to the estate was quiet. Liz watched the sisters, but tried not to be very obtrusive. Once they got to the front entrance, Isabel and Ava hurried off towards the upstairs, wanting to get cleaned up.

“So far so good,” Liz said, accepting the open arm Michael had for her.

“I would hope so,” he smiled, hugging her close to his side.

The four women spent the next few days hanging out as much as possible while Michael and Zan had business to take care of. Liz found herself enjoying the company of the two women and hoped that someday she’d be able to introduce them to her friends in Roswell. Maria’s wedding wasn’t until November, and while it was still five months away, she knew she’d have to get her butt down there soon to help her best friend prepare.

Liz and Serena were working in the lab that morning, wanting to get some tests completed before taking off for the afternoon. It was around one when they realized that neither Michael nor Zan had come to pick them up for lunch. They had planned on going to a local restaurant and maybe out to a movie, in order to get away from the compound for a few hours.

Liz walked with Serena to the mansion. Their new status as girlfriends of the owners, and at the very least co-conspirators, allowed Michael to give them new clearances for the house. Liz and Serena took turns leaning into the retina scanner at the back door and waved into the camera that hung near the entry way, knowing that security was watching them. It definitely helped to have an intimate connection with the boss, she thought.

“Come on,” Serena said. “They’re probably in the lounge watching basketball or something.”

Following her friend, Liz picked up the pace as they rushed to see their men.

Turning a corner, Serena stopped abruptly, shushing Liz as she collided with her dark haired friend. Liz heard raised voices coming from a nearby office, both Michael and Zan seemed to be in an intense argument the sisters.

“It’s no use, Zan,” Isabel sighed. “You have to go.”

Serena stiffened next to Liz as they inched closer. They hadn’t meant to eavesdrop, but the anger that seemed to flow from the room, showed that perhaps barging in wasn’t the best option.

“This is ridiculous,” Michael grunted. A loud bang ricocheted through the hall, sounding like a book had dropped on the marble floors.

“By order of the Plamonian Confederation, the four of us have to return to Antar,” Isabel said, sounding like she’d repeated herself a few times. Liz felt her heart race.

“What do they expect us to do?” Zan replied.

“As the King,” she iterated, “it’s your job to lead your people after the attack.”

Liz glanced at Serena; her friends’ brown eyes were wide. She reached over and grabbed Serena’s hand.

“What about Max? What’s he doing to stop the attack?”

“Contact was lost with our King after the message went through. As far as the Confederation is concerned, he collaborated with Lonnie on the take-over. He’s as good as dead,” Ava continued.

Liz heard a ripple in the Princess’ voice, there was pain and fear within her heart.

“They think Max betrayed us?” Michael growled. “He would NEVER betray us!”

“They have indisputable proof that Lonnie was working with Khivar,” Isabel said. “It’s almost certain that if we don’t leave soon, the Skins will kill us and get their precious seals anyway.”

“What about Serena?” Zan asked.

“Neither one of them will be welcome,” Ava’s shockingly cold voice responded. “You know very well what our laws state. And don’t even think about eloping with her tonight, older brother.”

“The Confederation,” Isabel continued, after a deliberate pause. Liz could easily imagine the glare that resonated from the sisters to the brothers across the room from each other. “Is giving us twenty-four hours to get the granolith powered up to go. Our people need their King, Zan, and Max’s actions are proving that he’s not the one with the seal.”

Tears sprung to Liz’s eyes as she heard Isabel’s voice soften and utter her last few words.

“Say your goodbyes, brother. We leave in the morning.”

A vice gripped Liz’s heart as silence spread throughout the hall. Michael and Zan were returning home and were ordered to leave them behind.

“What now?” Michael asked, his voice barely heard from their position in the hall.

“We give them one beautiful, perfect night,” Zan said, clearly pained. “And in the morning, we’ll say goodbye.”

Liz heard shuffling and fear raced through her body. They would be walking out of the office in mere moments. She pulled a stunned Serena back down the hall and they raced toward the back door. Towards the back door they ran, not wanting Zan and Michael to know they’d been listening.

They rushed down the hall and around the corner toward the patio doors.

“Liz,” Serena gasped, when they were safely outside the mansion. “What are we going to do?”

“Don’t admit anything,” Liz said, as they raced back to the lab, feeling her nightmares of the past couple months coming true.

Entering the building, Liz looked at her friend.

“We’ll enjoy our last night with them too. They have a duty, millions of citizens, maybe more, are counting on their King,” she said, hoping she could feel as strong as her voice implicated. “You heard about the betrayal, Isabel’s own soul betrayed them. Can you imagine how she must feel? Maybe even Zan’s as well. How can they not go and save their people? It’s what they were born for. And we… we’ll wait for them.”

She stopped before she continued her next thought; hopefully the men wouldn’t turn them out cold.

Serena nodded wordlessly, looking like she might be slipping into shock. Liz led her back to the lab, where Michael and Zan were supposed to meet them. Liz hoped that her friend would realize how important it was that they needed to be strong for the guys. The most important thing Michael and Zan needed right now was the support of the two women who loved them.

Liz stopped suddenly, the words cycling over and over in her head. The impending goodbye had forced her to realize her feelings for the sometimes stoic Second. Her throat closed in anxiety as she thought about what she’d almost said out loud. How could he be leaving her now that she’d finally realized how much his love and companionship meant to her?

A knock sounded on the lab door and Liz reached over and took Serena’s hand in hers.

“We will get through this,” she said, hoping to reassure both of them with her words.

In order to keep the research as legal and uncontestable as possible, everything was digitally recorded and not even Michael had permission to walk inside the lab. Security had cameras set around the large room in various locations and on occasion, Michael admitted to her that, sometimes he watched from the monitoring station. Despite everything though, Liz was dedicated to the science that she and Serena accomplished within the four walls of the lab and refused to let her boss enter the room.

“We’ll be right out,” she said, trying to sound as normal as possible. “Chin up, Serena. And not a word.”

Liz headed for the door after getting Serena’s unconvincing nod. Her heart ached for Serena, knowing exactly how she felt. Today would be hard on all four of them.

Lunch was a somber affair, as they ate but barely tasted the food they ordered at the restaurant in downtown Alamosa, not far from the local university. Ava and Isabel were nowhere to be found and Liz was grateful that they understood how important some one-on-one time was. Liz struggled to keep a conversation going with the two guys, knowing that they were mulling over their pending departure.

After the meal was finished and the men paid for the food, Liz managed to convince them to take the two girls out shopping. She didn’t expect much and planned to pay for her clothes or trinkets herself, she just wanting to spend some time with her favorite guys without the pressure of the awkward silences they faced at lunch. Liz wanted desperately to share what knowledge she had about their leaving; but if the guys weren’t ready to share, she wasn’t going to spoil it. Michael didn’t even put up a mock fight at not wanting to follow the girls around. She knew this was serious. They were all scared.

When Liz and Serena had enough of the near joyless shopping excursion, Michael pulled Liz aside.

“Let them take the limo,” he said, holding her elbow back.

“But,” Liz protested, before catching herself.

“I had my bike brought out,” he said, pointing toward a pickup at the back of the lot. Inside the bed was a shining blue BMW touring motorcycle. Liz had known he loved the freedom of a bike; but until today she’d never seen him use it.

“Do you want to ride with me?” he asked, as the driver of the truck climbed into the bed to unhook the bike.

“Sure,” she smiled, feeling a ripple of fear race up her back.

A mere minute or two later, Liz found herself helmeted and sitting on the back of the motorcycle. Michael instructed her on where to keep her arms wrapped around him and where her feet needed to stay, warning her that moving her legs might get her burned. Liz settled herself against his back, feet in place.

After letting the driver close the tailgate, Michael gave a quick waved then started the engine. The motor beneath them revved and Liz felt more than excitement fill her body.

“Hold on,” he said, through the radioed helmet. Liz grasped his waist, her knees tightened around his hips.

They sped off down the street and headed north back towards the compound. Liz felt her heart race as he gunned the engine down the straight parts of the highway. She was sure he was going faster than the speed limit allowed, but she kept her eyes away from the gauges. Resting her head on his shoulder to keep the wind away, Liz enjoyed the hum of the motor and the feeling of his heartbeat against her palms.

As the sun lowered itself in the sky, Liz noticed that they’d passed the exit for the compound a while ago.

“How are you holding up?” Michael asked.

“Fine,” she said, smiling into his chest.

“We’ll head home soon,” he assured her. “I just needed to get away.”

She nodded, unable to speak and afraid that he’d hear the sob that struggled to escape.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 15

Postby Europolarist » Mon Apr 15, 2013 7:31 am

AN: Short but sweet. Nano word count update: 26,825 :)
Chapter 16

When they finally stopped, the sun had almost set in the west. Liz guessed it was nearly nine and though they’d had a late lunch, heat rushed to her cheeks as her stomach rumbled from hunger. She hoped the engine covered her embarrassing moment.

Michael climbed off the bike and helped her off the back. Looking around, her legs still shaking from the vibrating engine, Liz realized that they were nowhere near the gated estate.

Before her stood a two storied log cabin in the middle of a clearing in the forest.

“Where are we?” she asked, taking off her helmet.

“This is my home,” he said, waving a hand towards the building. She’d had the feeling before that his room at the estate couldn’t be everything he had and now Liz knew the truth.

“Where’s all the security?” she asked with a smirk.

“It’s here,” he said, glancing around. “Just a little less obtrusive than at my parent’s house.”

Liz nodded.

“Wanna come inside?” he asked, scratching his eyebrow nervously.

Liz swallowed, knowing what was inevitably going to happen inside. For a fleeting moment she wondered where Serena was and how she was holding up. Pushing the thought out of her mind, knowing she’d break down in tears, Liz smiled up at her charming alien.

He took her hand and lead her up the cobbled path and the few stairs that led to a beautifully hand carved door. The stained glass mosaic glittered in the fading sunlight as he pushed open the door.

Stepping inside, Michael pulled her in behind him and Liz couldn’t help but gasp at the splendor inside this unassuming house. The great room opened to a vaulted ceiling, from which a large ceiling fan slowly spun. On her right was a massive stone fireplace obviously painstakingly crafted by a stone mason. A vase of white roses sat in the middle of the coffee table and Liz wondered when he’d arranged for the surprise. And happy that at some point he’d heard her gushing over the arrangements his mother prepared in the estate.

Leading her through the room, Liz saw a large kitchen on the other side of the wall. A marbled peninsula jutted out into the living area with state of the art appliances glittering as if they were new. It was then that Liz caught the scent of steak and baked beans in the air.

“Dinner’s waiting,” he said with a smirk. He pointed towards the back of the house and Liz saw a table already decorated and set with dinner.

Dinner was a quiet affair, and Liz was on pins and needles as she waited for Michael to finally come clean. She wasn’t sure at this point if he would ever admit to the trip he had to make in the morning.

After eating, Michael pulled her inside and they cuddled on the couch to watch a movie. With the windows open, Michael draped a blanket over their laps and she cuddled between his legs as the open credits of their favorite movie began.

It wasn’t long before Liz felt Michael’s warm hands trailing light lines against her stomach. He’d pulled up the hem of her shirt without her noticing under the warmth of the blanket. Though the skin of his fingers was rough from use, he still managed to caress her skin lightly. She stifled a moan and rested her head against his shoulder.

He leaned down and pulled her t-shirt away from her neck, placing a light kiss on her shoulder. His breath was hot and Liz could feel him pulsing against her back already. He nibbled her ear and Liz dug her fingers into his thighs, loving the shivers that rippled through her body.

His hands dipped below her shirt again and pulled the hem up and over her head, leaving her in her bra. He pushed her forward slightly, to reposition their bodies, and kissed lines across her shoulders, sweeping her hair out of the way as he licked the back of her neck. Goosebumps raced down her arms and Liz closed her eyes, enjoying his caressing touches.

Without realizing what he was doing, Liz felt the straps of her bra drop over her shoulders and opened her eyes to see Michael tossing the offending clothing to the floor. His large hands grabbed her breasts from behind and kneaded the soft flesh rougher than he normally did. The pain was exquisite as he pinched her nipples and pulled them away from her chest.

Liz moaned and threw her head to the side, feeling Michael sink his teeth into the flesh of her neck. As he sucked and bit the skin, Liz knew she’d have a bright red hickey in the morning, and she’d never be prouder to be marked by him.

His hands teased her stomach and undid the button on her shorts. Liz willingly slipped out of them and showed him for the first time that day that she’d gone without underwear for the afternoon. The motorcycle ride had been torturously rough, but had gone a long way to making Liz wet and ready for the man she loved.

Her walls clenched as the cooler air hit her swollen lower lips. She watched as Michael’s eyes grew wide in surprise. He smirked and Liz turned to kneel between his legs on the couch. Michael sat up and pulled her against his body, capturing her lips in a kiss.

Eagerly, she returned the kiss, wrapping her arms around his neck as he pulled her on top of him. She straddled him, carefully balancing on the couch cushion, and felt his erection pulsing against his pants. She wished they were already naked as she ground herself into his crotch. Her movements ensured that she’d be leaving a wet stain on the front of his khaki shorts and she relished the thought, running her fingers through his hair.

He pulled them off the couch and quickly headed toward a hallway that Liz guessed held a bedroom or two.

“Wait,” she said with a grin, stopping them. “Your pants.” She pointed and waited for him to undo the button and watch them drop to the floor. He’d gone commando as well and Liz almost laughed out loud at their forethought. Michael pushed her against the wall and lifted her up, making her wrap her legs around his waist as he kissed her harshly.

His cock throbbed near her slick opening and Liz whimpered as he pressed against her heat. With one swift movement, he pushed himself inside her, filling her to the brim as she settled over him. Her fingers clenched his shoulders as he pressed her against the cool wall and thrust deeply into her.

Liz felt her walls flutter and clench at the hard shaft as it sawed itself in and out of her. She cried out as already her nerves tingled with anticipation. Heat built up between them as he took her roughly and claimed her body as his. Liz’s legs were weak but she pushed back with his every thrust, matching the intensity that radiated from his body.

Thoughts of his leaving melted away while he rutted her against the wall. It was animalistic but felt so deliciously wonderful as his cock filled her.

Without warning, Michael stiffened, and Liz felt his hot seed fill her womb. He shuddered with each pulsing stream and though her orgasm eluded her, Liz called out in the pleasure that he’d taken within her walls.

Michael slumped against her, catching his breath for a moment or two. She felt his cock begin to soften within her. Liz would not let this be the last time he spent himself within her.

After he slipped from her, and Liz wanted to cry out in agony of losing him, Liz took a sudden shuddering breath and led him down the hall and found a large bedroom suite at the end.

She could look at her surroundings later, Liz thought as she dragged him to the bed. Still weak from his orgasm, Liz maneuvered him to lie down on the covers and crawled between his legs. Yes, she would give him time to recover; but it would not be long until she coaxed another orgasm from the man she loved.

“A minute,” he murmured, his eyes closed as if in pain. She knew he must be in agony knowing that tonight might be the last time he saw her. Liz kept her mouth shut, so to speak, but kissed her way up his leg, nipping at the skin on his knees and moving towards the prize.

She knew he would be tender for a few more minutes, but refused to stop herself from tasting him. For the moment she moved past the still pulsing member and licked and bit at the skin covering his abs. He winced as she hit a ticklish spot, and Liz moved on, up across the sparse spattering of hair across his pecs. She let her pebbled nipples drag across the skin lightly, reminding him of his favorite body part of hers.

His kiss was hot and intense as she finally reached his mouth. It was as if he was drawing her very soul out of him as he pulled her close, fingers digging roughly into her ass. Liz fought the desperate need to cry in his arms. Needing a moment to catch her breath, Liz pulled away.

“Scoot up,” she said, barely above a whisper.

He did as she asked and Liz moved down to his hips. She took his balls in her hand, massaging the soft but heavy skin in her fingers, and watched as his cock twitched. Mesmerized as it grew to its full size, she wrapped her fingers around the base and began stroking up and down the length. Slowly at first, she moved her hand up and down the wet shaft until she saw a glitter of moisture gather at the head. Bending over it, she wrapped her lips around it and sucked lightly, letting her tongue tease the hole and taste their combined juices.

At the first touch of her tongue along the sensitive spot under his shaft, Michael bucked up and pushed past her lips. Liz moaned and took him fully into her mouth, allowing him to press against her throat. Though this was not the first time that she’d gifted him with her mouth, Liz was determined to make this experience one that he would never forget.

She worked his shaft with her mouth for a few minutes, leaving light kisses along the pulsing skin between allowing him to press against her throat. Each time she took him back, tingles of pleasure rippled through her body. Still holding his balls, Liz squeezed the base with her forefinger and thumb and quickly took him into her mouth. Knowing he was seconds away from cumming again, she gathered her nerves and pressed further into him. The head of his cock pushed into her throat and she swallowed him down. Michael cried out and his balls drew up slightly in her hand. She pulled away and slammed down on him again.

Michael bucked up, his hips leaving the mattress and his cock began pulsing with his orgasm. Liz swallowed him down quickly, knowing she had mere seconds of air left in her lungs, but wanted to make his night. Cum shot down her throat effortlessly until Michael shuddered beneath her. Needing air desperately, Liz pulled away and breathed in for the first time in nearly a minute. It was amazing, feeling him release into her like that, and Liz knew Michael hadn’t been expecting it.

She looked at him, his eyes closed and his chest rising and falling quickly as he attempted to catch his own breath. Smiling she licked her lips and laid down at his side, waiting for him to come back down to Earth.

A couple of minutes passed before Michael turned to look at her.

“That was amazing,” he said, releasing a breath.

“Thanks,” she grinned.

They laid together in the companionable silence of the bedroom. Tension was in the air, but this was Michael’s call. It didn’t take long for him to reach over and take her hand in his as he stared up at the ceiling. She was content for the moment just to have his warm body next to hers.

Soon his fingers began traveling up her side, teasing the skin and leaving a trail of goose bumps in their wake. He turned onto his side, resting his head on an arm and looked at her. The lights were dim in the room, but Liz eventually turned over herself to look at him.

Suddenly Michael reached between them and pulled her body up to his, his lips crashing against hers. Liz was instantly wet, her body aching and needing him.

His hand trailed down and reached between her legs, teasing her clit and collecting the juices that leaked from her body. Breaking their intense kissing, Michael pushed her into the mattress and leaned down. He kissed down her chest and pulled a nipple between his teeth. Rolling it against his tongue, Liz moaned and pressed herself toward his mouth.

Michael chuckled and pushed her down again, settling his body over hers. His kisses led south and Liz felt her abs tighten as he placed feather light kisses against her skin. When he reached the zenith at her legs, Michael breathed hot air against her skin and nuzzled against her lower lips with his nose. Taking a deep breath, he moaned and shuddered. His tongue reached out and flicked her pulsing clit. Liz cried out, her body already shaking in anticipation.

Placing a kiss on her sensitive nub, Michael spread her lips open and teased her leaking entrance with his fingers. Pressing first one knuckle and then two into her waiting pussy. Liz’s legs tightened around his shoulders as his tongue lapped up her juices, expertly tormenting her lower half.

His tongue dipped inside and Liz felt the beginnings of her orgasm building in her gut. One touch had almost exploded the pent up energy inside her. He pressed a finger inside, twisting it and pressing against the soft spot inside her. Liz shuddered. His tongue worked at her opening for a few more moments and then he turned his attention on her nub. Raking his teeth across the skin, Liz cried out, bucking against his face as he simultaneously shoved two fingers deep inside her.

“Please,” she begged, desperately needing more contact, more friction from him.

“Please what?” he chuckled.

“More,” Liz sobbed as his fingers pushed deeper inside her.

“More what?”

Liz opened her eyes and looked down at Michael, a glimmer of evil flickered in his eyes as he watched her. Liz nearly growled with need.

“Fuck me,” she ordered, completely surprised that the profanity escaped her lips. But damn, she thought, she needed this.

Michael sped up his fingers, the noise of their movement echoing through the room. Tingles started at her toes. She didn’t want him to make her cum like this, she wanted to feel him fill her again.

“No, please,” she begged again. “I need you.”

His fingers twisted and hit that sweet spot. Liz screamed as he forced the orgasm from her, in pleasant agony. Blood raced through her body at her eruption and her legs shook around his shoulders.

Liz opened her eyes, the ripples of pleasure receding in her toes. Michael still lay between her legs but concern was evident in his eyes.

“You blacked out,” he said quietly.

A flush of embarrassment washed through Liz. She knew her orgasm would be powerful, but hadn’t expected passing out on him.

“It’s okay,” he smiled, climbing out from between her legs. “Besides, you have all night to make it up to me.”

Liz glanced down and saw his shaft bobbing before her, already ready for another round.

“I love alien stamina,” she grinned.

It wasn’t until the sun started peaking through the shades of the bedroom that Liz and Michael had tired each other out.

They lay in bed together, staring at the ceiling, as she caught her breath.

“Liz,” he said, his voice barely above a whisper.

Tears immediately sprung to her eyes. Their time had run out.

Not trusting herself to look at him without completely losing whatever composure she had left, Liz spoke to the ceiling.

“I know,” she sighed, swallowing the knot that had formed at the back of her throat.

“What?” he asked quietly, turning to look at her.

Liz glanced at him, seeing pain and confusion in his eyes.

“You have to go,” she said. “I know.” Liz paused. “Serena and I overheard you talking to Zan and your sisters.”

He pulled her close and Liz sobbed into his shoulder. His hand running up and down her back. She wrapped her arm around his waist and gripped him tightly as the emotions she’d kept in check all night finally spilled over.

“I’m so sorry,” he said, his voice cracking. “But we don’t have a choice.”

She nodded, not able to trust her voice.

“How much time do we have?” she asked.

“Not much,” he admitted.

Liz snuggled into his chest again, needing to feel his arms around her for just a few more moments.

Europolarist
Enthusiastic Roswellian
Posts: 36
Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2004 4:33 pm
Location: Atop Mt. Michael
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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 16

Postby Europolarist » Tue Apr 23, 2013 11:29 am

AN: Sorry this is a bit late :(
Thank you, Carolyn, for sticking with it :)
And Sarah, enjoy this chapter!

Chapter 16

When they finally stopped, the sun had almost set in the west. Liz guessed it was nearly nine and though they’d had a late lunch, heat rushed to her cheeks as her stomach rumbled from hunger. She hoped the engine covered her embarrassing moment.

Michael climbed off the bike and helped her off the back. Looking around, her legs still shaking from the vibrating engine, Liz realized that they were nowhere near the gated estate.

Before her stood a two storied log cabin in the middle of a clearing in the forest.

“Where are we?” she asked, taking off her helmet.

“This is my home,” he said, waving a hand towards the building. She’d had the feeling before that his room at the estate couldn’t be everything he had and now Liz knew the truth.

“Where’s all the security?” she asked with a smirk.

“It’s here,” he said, glancing around. “Just a little less obtrusive than at my parent’s house.”

Liz nodded.

“Wanna come inside?” he asked, scratching his eyebrow nervously.

Liz swallowed, knowing what was inevitably going to happen inside. For a fleeting moment she wondered where Serena was and how she was holding up. Pushing the thought out of her mind, knowing she’d break down in tears, Liz smiled up at her charming alien.

He took her hand and lead her up the cobbled path and the few stairs that led to a beautifully hand carved door. The stained glass mosaic glittered in the fading sunlight as he pushed open the door.

Stepping inside, Michael pulled her in behind him and Liz couldn’t help but gasp at the splendor inside this unassuming house. The great room opened to a vaulted ceiling, from which a large ceiling fan slowly spun. On her right was a massive stone fireplace obviously painstakingly crafted by a stone mason. A vase of white roses sat in the middle of the coffee table and Liz wondered when he’d arranged for the surprise. And happy that at some point he’d heard her gushing over the arrangements his mother prepared in the estate.

Leading her through the room, Liz saw a large kitchen on the other side of the wall. A marbled peninsula jutted out into the living area with state of the art appliances glittering as if they were new. It was then that Liz caught the scent of steak and baked beans in the air.

“Dinner’s waiting,” he said with a smirk. He pointed towards the back of the house and Liz saw a table already decorated and set with dinner.

Dinner was a quiet affair, and Liz was on pins and needles as she waited for Michael to finally come clean. She wasn’t sure at this point if he would ever admit to the trip he had to make in the morning.

After eating, Michael pulled her inside and they cuddled on the couch to watch a movie. With the windows open, Michael draped a blanket over their laps and she cuddled between his legs as the open credits of their favorite movie began.

It wasn’t long before Liz felt Michael’s warm hands trailing light lines against her stomach. He’d pulled up the hem of her shirt without her noticing under the warmth of the blanket. Though the skin of his fingers was rough from use, he still managed to caress her skin lightly. She stifled a moan and rested her head against his shoulder.

He leaned down and pulled her t-shirt away from her neck, placing a light kiss on her shoulder. His breath was hot and Liz could feel him pulsing against her back already. He nibbled her ear and Liz dug her fingers into his thighs, loving the shivers that rippled through her body.

His hands dipped below her shirt again and pulled the hem up and over her head, leaving her in her bra. He pushed her forward slightly, to reposition their bodies, and kissed lines across her shoulders, sweeping her hair out of the way as he licked the back of her neck. Goosebumps raced down her arms and Liz closed her eyes, enjoying his caressing touches.

Without realizing what he was doing, Liz felt the straps of her bra drop over her shoulders and opened her eyes to see Michael tossing the offending clothing to the floor. His large hands grabbed her breasts from behind and kneaded the soft flesh rougher than he normally did. The pain was exquisite as he pinched her nipples and pulled them away from her chest.

Liz moaned and threw her head to the side, feeling Michael sink his teeth into the flesh of her neck. As he sucked and bit the skin, Liz knew she’d have a bright red hickey in the morning, and she’d never be prouder to be marked by him.

His hands teased her stomach and undid the button on her shorts. Liz willingly slipped out of them and showed him for the first time that day that she’d gone without underwear for the afternoon. The motorcycle ride had been torturously rough, but had gone a long way to making Liz wet and ready for the man she loved.

Her walls clenched as the cooler air hit her swollen lower lips. She watched as Michael’s eyes grew wide in surprise. He smirked and Liz turned to kneel between his legs on the couch. Michael sat up and pulled her against his body, capturing her lips in a kiss.

Eagerly, she returned the kiss, wrapping her arms around his neck as he pulled her on top of him. She straddled him, carefully balancing on the couch cushion, and felt his erection pulsing against his pants. She wished they were already naked as she ground herself into his crotch. Her movements ensured that she’d be leaving a wet stain on the front of his khaki shorts and she relished the thought, running her fingers through his hair.

He pulled them off the couch and quickly headed toward a hallway that Liz guessed held a bedroom or two.

“Wait,” she said with a grin, stopping them. “Your pants.” She pointed and waited for him to undo the button and watch them drop to the floor. He’d gone commando as well and Liz almost laughed out loud at their forethought. Michael pushed her against the wall and lifted her up, making her wrap her legs around his waist as he kissed her harshly.

His cock throbbed near her slick opening and Liz whimpered as he pressed against her heat. With one swift movement, he pushed himself inside her, filling her to the brim as she settled over him. Her fingers clenched his shoulders as he pressed her against the cool wall and thrust deeply into her.

Liz felt her walls flutter and clench at the hard shaft as it sawed itself in and out of her. She cried out as already her nerves tingled with anticipation. Heat built up between them as he took her roughly and claimed her body as his. Liz’s legs were weak but she pushed back with his every thrust, matching the intensity that radiated from his body.

Thoughts of his leaving melted away while he rutted her against the wall. It was animalistic but felt so deliciously wonderful as his cock filled her.

Without warning, Michael stiffened, and Liz felt his hot seed fill her womb. He shuddered with each pulsing stream and though her orgasm eluded her, Liz called out in the pleasure that he’d taken within her walls.

Michael slumped against her, catching his breath for a moment or two. She felt his cock begin to soften within her. Liz would not let this be the last time he spent himself within her.

After he slipped from her, and Liz wanted to cry out in agony of losing him, Liz took a sudden shuddering breath and led him down the hall and found a large bedroom suite at the end.

She could look at her surroundings later, Liz thought as she dragged him to the bed. Still weak from his orgasm, Liz maneuvered him to lie down on the covers and crawled between his legs. Yes, she would give him time to recover; but it would not be long until she coaxed another orgasm from the man she loved.

“A minute,” he murmured, his eyes closed as if in pain. She knew he must be in agony knowing that tonight might be the last time he saw her. Liz kept her mouth shut, so to speak, but kissed her way up his leg, nipping at the skin on his knees and moving towards the prize.

She knew he would be tender for a few more minutes, but refused to stop herself from tasting him. For the moment she moved past the still pulsing member and licked and bit at the skin covering his abs. He winced as she hit a ticklish spot, and Liz moved on, up across the sparse spattering of hair across his pecs. She let her pebbled nipples drag across the skin lightly, reminding him of his favorite body part of hers.

His kiss was hot and intense as she finally reached his mouth. It was as if he was drawing her very soul out of him as he pulled her close, fingers digging roughly into her ass. Liz fought the desperate need to cry in his arms. Needing a moment to catch her breath, Liz pulled away.

“Scoot up,” she said, barely above a whisper.

He did as she asked and Liz moved down to his hips. She took his balls in her hand, massaging the soft but heavy skin in her fingers, and watched as his cock twitched. Mesmerized as it grew to its full size, she wrapped her fingers around the base and began stroking up and down the length. Slowly at first, she moved her hand up and down the wet shaft until she saw a glitter of moisture gather at the head. Bending over it, she wrapped her lips around it and sucked lightly, letting her tongue tease the hole and taste their combined juices.

At the first touch of her tongue along the sensitive spot under his shaft, Michael bucked up and pushed past her lips. Liz moaned and took him fully into her mouth, allowing him to press against her throat. Though this was not the first time that she’d gifted him with her mouth, Liz was determined to make this experience one that he would never forget.

She worked his shaft with her mouth for a few minutes, leaving light kisses along the pulsing skin between allowing him to press against her throat. Each time she took him back, tingles of pleasure rippled through her body. Still holding his balls, Liz squeezed the base with her forefinger and thumb and quickly took him into her mouth. Knowing he was seconds away from cumming again, she gathered her nerves and pressed further into him. The head of his cock pushed into her throat and she swallowed him down. Michael cried out and his balls drew up slightly in her hand. She pulled away and slammed down on him again.

Michael bucked up, his hips leaving the mattress and his cock began pulsing with his orgasm. Liz swallowed him down quickly, knowing she had mere seconds of air left in her lungs, but wanted to make his night. Cum shot down her throat effortlessly until Michael shuddered beneath her. Needing air desperately, Liz pulled away and breathed in for the first time in nearly a minute. It was amazing, feeling him release into her like that, and Liz knew Michael hadn’t been expecting it.

She looked at him, his eyes closed and his chest rising and falling quickly as he attempted to catch his own breath. Smiling she licked her lips and laid down at his side, waiting for him to come back down to Earth.

A couple of minutes passed before Michael turned to look at her.

“That was amazing,” he said, releasing a breath.

“Thanks,” she grinned.

They laid together in the companionable silence of the bedroom. Tension was in the air, but this was Michael’s call. It didn’t take long for him to reach over and take her hand in his as he stared up at the ceiling. She was content for the moment just to have his warm body next to hers.

Soon his fingers began traveling up her side, teasing the skin and leaving a trail of goose bumps in their wake. He turned onto his side, resting his head on an arm and looked at her. The lights were dim in the room, but Liz eventually turned over herself to look at him.

Suddenly Michael reached between them and pulled her body up to his, his lips crashing against hers. Liz was instantly wet, her body aching and needing him.

His hand trailed down and reached between her legs, teasing her clit and collecting the juices that leaked from her body. Breaking their intense kissing, Michael pushed her into the mattress and leaned down. He kissed down her chest and pulled a nipple between his teeth. Rolling it against his tongue, Liz moaned and pressed herself toward his mouth.

Michael chuckled and pushed her down again, settling his body over hers. His kisses led south and Liz felt her abs tighten as he placed feather light kisses against her skin. When he reached the zenith at her legs, Michael breathed hot air against her skin and nuzzled against her lower lips with his nose. Taking a deep breath, he moaned and shuddered. His tongue reached out and flicked her pulsing clit. Liz cried out, her body already shaking in anticipation.

Placing a kiss on her sensitive nub, Michael spread her lips open and teased her leaking entrance with his fingers. Pressing first one knuckle and then two into her waiting pussy. Liz’s legs tightened around his shoulders as his tongue lapped up her juices, expertly tormenting her lower half.

His tongue dipped inside and Liz felt the beginnings of her orgasm building in her gut. One touch had almost exploded the pent up energy inside her. He pressed a finger inside, twisting it and pressing against the soft spot inside her. Liz shuddered. His tongue worked at her opening for a few more moments and then he turned his attention on her nub. Raking his teeth across the skin, Liz cried out, bucking against his face as he simultaneously shoved two fingers deep inside her.

“Please,” she begged, desperately needing more contact, more friction from him.

“Please what?” he chuckled.

“More,” Liz sobbed as his fingers pushed deeper inside her.

“More what?”

Liz opened her eyes and looked down at Michael, a glimmer of evil flickered in his eyes as he watched her. Liz nearly growled with need.

“Fuck me,” she ordered, completely surprised that the profanity escaped her lips. But damn, she thought, she needed this.

Michael sped up his fingers, the noise of their movement echoing through the room. Tingles started at her toes. She didn’t want him to make her cum like this, she wanted to feel him fill her again.

“No, please,” she begged again. “I need you.”

His fingers twisted and hit that sweet spot. Liz screamed as he forced the orgasm from her, in pleasant agony. Blood raced through her body at her eruption and her legs shook around his shoulders.

Liz opened her eyes, the ripples of pleasure receding in her toes. Michael still lay between her legs but concern was evident in his eyes.

“You blacked out,” he said quietly.

A flush of embarrassment washed through Liz. She knew her orgasm would be powerful, but hadn’t expected passing out on him.

“It’s okay,” he smiled, climbing out from between her legs. “Besides, you have all night to make it up to me.”

Liz glanced down and saw his shaft bobbing before her, already ready for another round.

“I love alien stamina,” she grinned.

It wasn’t until the sun started peaking through the shades of the bedroom that Liz and Michael had tired each other out.

They lay in bed together, staring at the ceiling, as she caught her breath.

“Liz,” he said, his voice barely above a whisper.

Tears immediately sprung to her eyes. Their time had run out.

Not trusting herself to look at him without completely losing whatever composure she had left, Liz spoke to the ceiling.

“I know,” she sighed, swallowing the knot that had formed at the back of her throat.

“What?” he asked quietly, turning to look at her.

Liz glanced at him, seeing pain and confusion in his eyes.

“You have to go,” she said. “I know.” Liz paused. “Serena and I overheard you talking to Zan and your sisters.”

He pulled her close and Liz sobbed into his shoulder. His hand running up and down her back. She wrapped her arm around his waist and gripped him tightly as the emotions she’d kept in check all night finally spilled over.

“I’m so sorry,” he said, his voice cracking. “But we don’t have a choice.”

She nodded, not able to trust her voice.

“How much time do we have?” she asked.

“Not much,” he admitted.

Liz snuggled into his chest again, needing to feel his arms around her for just a few more moments.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 17

Postby Europolarist » Fri May 03, 2013 4:31 pm

AN: I am back, dear readers!!!! Sorry I couldn't get a chapter up on Tuesday :(
I do have a request. Would anyone be interested in Beta'ing a new story for me? I came up with an idea for a Roswell/Mass Effect crossover, that I'd really like to try out. If anyone's interested, please PM me :)

Here's your chapter!!!

Chapter 17

Liz and Michael arrived at the estate just before ten am. He still needed to tell his parents, his watchers, goodbye. He’d explained to Liz that they would stay on Earth to protect the core pieces of the weapon; and now that Liz and Serena had been welcomed into the circle, the watchers were in charge of the women as well.

“The rules about visitors still applies, Liz,” he said, as they walked to the estate entrance. “I don’t want to risk any unnecessary attention on your family, just because we’re gone. The skins may be incapacitated at this point, but our enemies are still out there. Please remember that.”

Liz nodded, worry and dread filled her heart.

Michael stopped short and turned to her.

“It will be okay,” he said, reaching out and cupping her cheeks with his hands. “My parents are more than capable of protecting you and your loved ones. If I had any choice in the matter, you know I’d stay.”

She nodded again, fearful that her tears would start up again.

“I need you to be strong for me,” he begged. “I promise that I’ll be back.” He closed the distance between them and placed a kiss on her forehead. Before they moved, he handed her a single key on a simple metal key ring.

“It’s for the cabin,” he said. “If you ever want to go there, it’s in your name.”

Liz almost bawled right there, staring down at the key. Even if he couldn’t be there, Michael wanted to make sure she was taken care of.

He knocked on a nearby door and walked inside, then waited for Liz to follow him in while he said his goodbyes.

Liz watched wordlessly, feeling numb, as Michael hugged the two aliens who’d been his parents while living on Earth. They promised to keep an eye on her and said that they’d try to help her as much as possible. They ensured Michael that they would care for her as they would their own daughter.

Isabel entered the office a few minutes later, rushing over to give the woman she called her mother a hug. Liz was humbled to see Isabel as emotionally wrecked as she felt about the departure. She couldn’t imagine how hard it would be to say goodbye to the ones who raised you and not be able to tell when you’d see them again.

Nearly bursting into tears again, Liz bit her lip to keep herself restrained. She had to be strong, to show Michael that she would survive this and wait for him until she died.

Ava arrived a few moments later, even the cold punk princess demeanor she normally carried had disappeared with the nerves she showed at their departure. Zan followed her in, holding Serena’s hand tightly in his. Serena looked like a wreck and Liz could only guess that she mirrored the absolute depressive look that her friend did.

“Keep my beloved safe,” Zan said, staring at Michael’s parents.

“With our lives, my liege,” Michael’s father said, bowing slightly. “They will be protected as our own children.”

Zan nodded and glanced at the clock.

“We need to go.”

He led the way out of the office and down the hall; followed by Michael’s parents and Isabel and Ava. Michael walked across the room and took Liz’s hand as they trailed behind the King.

The group walked together through the house and up to the top floor of the mansion. Reaching a slick black door, Michael swiped his hand over the door and it opened for him. Inside, the room glowed almost like phosphorescence. At the center of the room was a conical black relic that balanced on a point. The ceiling of the room rippled with energy and Liz thought she saw the blackness of space twinkling with a thousand stars shining back at them. On the wall, Liz saw a sort of futuristic clock keeping time as the LED lights flashed on and off in a circular pattern.

“Five minutes,” Isabel said. She stepped toward John Guerin and placed a kiss on his cheek. Then the tall brunette walked over to the giant gem and placed a hand on the outside. With a flash of light Isabel disappeared and reflected back at them from inside. Energy swirled around her as she looked out at them, a sad smile on her face.

Liz had no idea how this alien technology worked, but a small sliver of her soul wondered while her heart broke.

Michael turned to her and placed a kiss on her lips, pressing against her and wrapping his arms around her body. He poured his soul into the kiss and Liz sobbed as she returned it. After a moment, Liz saw the flash as Ava entered the machine and Michael pulled away.

“I love you,” she whispered, keeping her eyes closed to delay the agony of looking at him one final time.

“Liz,” he said, causing her eyes to shoot open. “I love you, too.” He took a step back and Liz felt her heart shatter as he turned around and placed his hand on the gem-shaped ship. A bright light filled the room once more and Liz glanced over to see that Zan had disappeared as well.

“Come,” John said, taking her arm and pulling her away.

“But,” she protested, looking back at the reflections of her friends.

“There’s no time.” He pulled her through a nearby doorway and Liz saw Serena and Elena Guerin already inside. The one wall was made entirely of bank glass, probably a few inches thick. She could see the ship shake slightly on the other side.

The last few minutes of the countdown were silent as Liz watched a blinking array of lights slowly count down the numbers. When the LED’s all turned off, reaching zero hour, a bright light exploded in the room and the walls and floors and ceilings shook. They covered their heads as a large explosion ripped through the room, sounding like a jet engine, and quaking through the house. When Liz managed to open her eyes, the ship was gone.

She raced up to the glass and saw a streak of exhaust reaching toward the sky.

“Come here,” Elena said, pointing toward the radar.

For a mere second, Liz watched the ship pierce through the atmosphere. Serena collapsed on the floor.

It took a couple of minutes for Liz to get Serena to wake up after passing out with grief. When her friend did wake up, Liz held her as Serena sobbed tears of anguish. Liz looked up at John and Elena, who stood silently with worry etched on their faces. They all had said goodbye to loved ones.

When Liz finally coaxed Serena to stand up, John and Elena had left them to their privacy.

“Come on,” Liz said, her heart aching for her friend. “Let’s get back to the house.”

She walked Serena down the hallway and down the flight of stairs near the back door. Thankfully one of the guards was waiting with a golf cart to take them across the estate grounds. Liz wrapped her arm around a stoic Serena and whispered words of encouragement.

The rest of the day passed slowly as Liz tended to her broken friend. Serena sat eerily quiet on the couch, staring at the wall for most of the afternoon. Liz called up to the house and asked if the doctor would be available for counseling if Serena decided she wanted it. Though Liz loved Michael with all of her being, she couldn’t imagine the pain Serena must be feeling if she’d gone into shock like this. The doctor offered to stop by in the morning if she hadn’t begun responding.

It wasn’t until nearly midnight, that Liz noticed tears streaming down Serena’s cheeks.

That night Liz climbed into bed with Serena, hoping that the comfort of a friend would help her sleep.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 18

Postby Europolarist » Fri May 10, 2013 11:26 am

Chapter 18

It’s been six days, thirteen hours, forty-two minutes and thirty-five seconds since you left. My heart aches every time I wake up in a cold sweat and can’t feel your body next to mine.

Liz looked out the window of her bedroom, hearing a dove cooing in the night. Her eyes ached from the crying she’d been doing and she knew that Serena, in the room next door, slept even less than she did.

Looking back down at the journal in her hand, Liz squinted at the paper, barely able to read her own handwriting in the dim light. She’d decided a couple days ago to start keeping a journal. Originally she just wanted to get her feelings out on paper, not wanting to bother her depressed friend; but after multiple failed starts she decided that the journal would be a present to Michael if he ever came back.

She shook the terrifying thought out of her head and sighed. Thinking like that didn’t help the situation.

Serena’s not doing so well today. I thought she might be okay after being able to get her out yesterday for a walk, but she’s done nothing but stare into space all day. I wonder if I need to speak to John and Elena about having her under medical surveillance.

Sighing, even as the words scrawled onto the paper, Liz knew that would never work. The only thing that would help Serena was for Zan to return.

I miss you

Liz closed the journal, tears threatening to fall from her eyes. She couldn’t take this anymore. The guys hadn’t even been gone a week yet and the loneliness was going to drive her insane. She fingered the key that hung from a chain around her neck. It wasn’t the biggest gift he’d ever given her; but the key was the most important gift she’d received from any one in her life. It was a promise of their life ahead.

Her phone buzzed on her lap and Liz flipped it over to see that Maria’d texted her.

She sighed, knowing she’d been a terrible maid of honor to the bride-to-be. Liz owed her friend more than she thought she could do.

Instead of texting again, Liz saw her phone light up from the call and picked up the line.

“Liz?” Maria said over the line.

“Maria,” she said, hearing the sadness in her voice.

“Are you okay?” Maria asked, sounding genuinely worried.

“No,” she admitted, knowing Maria would hear the lie in her voice. She’d told Maria that the men had gone on a research trip to South America and had gone missing from their camps and that it was feared that they were dead; but it didn’t compare with the truth that they’d taken a spaceship and flown across the galaxy to deal with a traitorous sister and possibly faced their own deaths at the hands of a once trusted brother.

“Why don’t we come up there for the weekend?” Maria asked, sounding unsure.

“You can’t,” Liz replied, knowing that the watchers wouldn’t disobey the King and the General.

“But,” Maria started and Liz suddenly realized what she needed to do.

“Maria,” she said. “I’m gonna see if I can’t convince Serena to come down there, and I promise I’ll make my absence up to you. I’m sure the lab can do without us for a few days.”

“I know you probably don’t feel like it,” Maria said. “I can’t imagine being without Alex like that.”

“No,” Liz said. “But, I owe it to you to be the best maid of honor I can be. Besides, you still haven’t picked out a dress and I need the distraction.”

“Sounds good,” Maria said.

Liz could hear the smile in her friend’s voice. Maybe this was exactly what she needed.

“I’ll talk to you tomorrow when I find out more,” Liz said.

“Of course.”

Liz was about to hang up when she heard Maria say something.

“What was that?” she asked, putting her ear to the cell.

“Love you, Chica.”

“Love you too, DeLuca.”

The next morning, Liz groaned hearing the buzzing of the alarm on her nightstand. She’d been awake since five-thirty staring at the ceiling, after only sleeping for about two hours. If this kept up she was going to need some sleeping pills to get some rest.

Liz plodded out of her bedroom to make some coffee dressed in her pajamas. She could hear light snoring in the other room and smiled, thanking whatever higher power allowed her roommate some sleep.

Instead of waking Serena up with her noise, Liz wrote a quick note on a pad of paper and slipped the sheet under the closed bedroom door. She could just as easily make a cup in the mansion as she could here.

When she stepped outside, Liz was surprised to hear the chirping of birds. She looked around and saw a pair of finches splashing in a nearby birdbath. The air was warm but crisp, the usual humidity not having set in yet, and for the first time in nearly a week, Liz felt OK.

She waved at the gardener who was pruning the bushes on the way to the labs. He smiled and waved back and Liz was glad that most of the employees were perfectly OK with Liz and Serena. It helped that they weren’t sure what was being researched and didn’t feel any resentment about her closeness with the boss.

“Liz?” Elena asked, when she walked in the kitchen a few minutes later.

“Morning, Elena,” Liz said, smiling meekly at her boss’ caretaker.

“Pardon me, but you look like shit,” the outspoken woman said, standing from her chair at the kitchen table.

“Thanks,” Liz said, wanting to feign anger but not having the energy.

“Liz,” the motherly woman said, sounding sorry for her words.

“It’s alright,” she sighed. “I know I look terrible. I just can’t stay asleep. I think I might talk to the Doc about getting something to help. Maybe something as simple as that sleep-aid syrup.”

Elena nodded.

“How’s Serena?” she asked.

“Not so good,” Liz sighed. “I can’t get her to talk to me.”

“Maybe we just need to force her to come out of the house,” Elena suggested.

“I actually wanted to talk to you about that,” Liz said, having poured herself a cup of steaming hot coffee. “Do you think it would be alright to take a few days off? I need to help my friend out with some wedding plans and get out of here.”

“That’s fine,” Elena said. “Why didn’t you say anything before?”

Liz shrugged, looking down at her mug, while she took a seat at the table with Elena.

“I’ve got an idea,” Elena grinned. “Why don’t I send for the helicopter and you and Serena can have a week or so down in Roswell?”

“I’m not sure being in the alien capital of the United States will help Serena,” Liz admitted, “but we’ll probably be spending a lot of time in Albuquerque or Sante Fe helping Maria get this wedding together.”

“Sounds like a good plan.”

Liz turned quickly in her chair, nearly knocking over her coffee mug, to see Serena standing in the doorway of the kitchen.

“Serena!” Liz said, jumping out of her seat. The two girls rushed toward each other and Liz wrapped her arms around her skinny friend, realizing for a moment how much weight the other girl had lost.

“I realized,” Serena said, sounding like she was swallowing back tears. “Last night, that Zan wouldn’t want me to wallow in despair. He wouldn’t want me to be sad, miss him yes, but this,” she said pointing at her body, “is not what he would want.”

Liz grinned, thankful that something, even if it were a memory of the man she’d lost, got through to Serena.

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Re: Finding Family, Finding Home (UC, AU, Adult) Chapter 18

Postby Europolarist » Thu May 16, 2013 4:58 pm

AN: Thanks for the feedback Sarah and Carolyn. I'm sorry about the wait this week. Hopefully I get back on Monday posts next week. :twisted:

Chapter 19

That afternoon Liz found herself sitting next to Serena in the black EC130 that Guerin Research Inc had sent over for her use. The girls hadn’t packed much, only planning to be gone for a few days; but Liz was happy to see Serena finally reacting with the world around her when they’d prepared to leave earlier that day.

She’d called Maria after breakfast to tell her the plan, and Maria promised that they’d meet her at the small airstrip just outside of the town limits where Jim and Kyle had gotten their pilot’s licenses.

When Scott, the pilot, gave them the signal that they were landing, Liz felt the butterflies rise in her stomach. She’d loved being in the helicopter, especially because the last time she’d flown she’d been running away from the Skins and traumatized; this time she could watch everything that the pilot did in front of her.

It was almost 4 pm when they finally landed in Roswell and Liz grinned when she saw the Sheriff’s SUV sitting near the large helicopter landing pad that they headed toward.

They landed without incident and waited until the blades slowed considerably. The air was thick with tension as Liz wanted to get out and see her longtime friends. When the pilot reached back and opened their door, Serena jumped onto the pad first.

“I’ll be back next Sunday, Miss Liz,” Scott said.

“Thank you,” she smiled.

“You have my number if things change, right?”

Liz nodded, everyone that worked closely with the family was more than polite with her and it meant a lot.

“I’ll let you know,” she promised and hopped out of the helicopter while the co-pilot moved to grab their bags.

“Lizzie,” a voice called out and Liz turned to see Maria rushing toward them. Her heart raced, so happy to see Maria again, who seemed to glow. Maria pulled her into a bear hug, and swung her back and forth a few times.

“I’m so glad you’re here.”

“Me too,” Liz said, pulling away from the hug.

Maria reached over and hugged Serena as well, shocking the distracted woman a bit. Liz almost laughed.

“Hey, Liz,” Kyle nodded his head in her direction and Liz melted seeing him walking over with his father. “It’s good to see you.”

Liz walked over and hugged him, allowing her body to melt into his hug. It wasn’t the same as Michael’s had been and they weren’t the same as when she’d actively been dating the deputy, but it was nice nonetheless to be enveloped in his arms for a few moments.

She looked carefully at their friends, seeing the pity they gave both Serena and herself; but they really had no idea what the two women were going through.

“You ladies hungry?” Jim asked a few minutes later, as they headed toward the gate.

“No, sir,” Serena said, from her seat against the window.

“We ate not too long before we left,” Liz said, looking over at Serena. “But we’d love to have dinner later.”

“Liz, you don’t have to put up a show for us,” Jim said, looking in the mirror at her. “We all know how tough this must be for you two.”

“Really, Jim, its fine,” she said. “We need some normal while we’re here.”

“You’re the boss, Liz,” he said, waving at the security guard at the gate and headed toward the highway.

A few hours later Liz found herself sitting down for dinner with her parents, and the combined DeLuca-Valenti family. They were talking plans for the wedding as well as grilling Kyle about his upcoming job interview with the New Mexico Highway Patrol. Liz was grateful that they didn’t try to force Serena into the conversation and occasionally she joined in with a quip. It was nice to feel normal again, at least for a while.

“Tomorrow, you and I are going to Las Cruces to go dress shopping,” Maria said, eyeing Liz.

“Not Sante Fe or Albuquerque?” Liz asked, surprised. Surely the state capital and the biggest city would have more choices as far as wedding dresses went.

“Nope, Las Cruces. There’s a designer that I absolutely have to check out.”

Liz nodded, it wasn’t surprising that Maria planned to have a custom gown made. The poor girl had dreamed about this wedding since they were eight years old.

“Can I come?” Serena asked.

Maria looked at Liz for a moment, who shrugged her shoulders at her friend.

“The more the merrier,” Maria grinned.

Liz smiled, thankful that Serena was showing some initiative. Maybe this week was exactly what the two of them needed. She knew they wouldn’t last long on the path they’d been taking in Alamosa.

The next day Liz found herself sitting in the backseat of Maria’s old Jetta, surprised the old junker still drove.

“Are you sure this thing will make it to Las Cruces?” she asked, feeling uncomfortable in the slightly rattling car.

“My baby will make it there and back with no problems,” Maria grinned, rubbing her hand on the dash.

Liz could only roll her eyes as she heard a loud bang behind her.

“Shit,” Maria spat, pulling the car over to the side of the road. “We blew a tire. Thanks, Liz.”

Serena laughed from her seat in the front.

“Sorry,” she said after a moment.

Liz felt her heart squeeze, grateful that something finally made her sullen friend laugh. She climbed out of the car to look at the wheel while Maria called the sheriff’s office to beg her step-father to come pick them up.

“It doesn’t look too bad,” she said, seeing Serena climb out of the car.

“Wheel’s shredded,” Serena said. “Guess we won’t be going to see the designer today.”

“No!” Maria said, leaning against the hood of her Jetta. “I won’t miss my appointment!” she whined.

“Tell Kyle to get his butt over here,” she said into the phone. “He can drive us to Las Cruces.”

Liz could hear Jim laughing from the other side of the car.

“Lemme call my mom,” Liz said. “She can probably pick us up, and we can head over.”

“No, Liz, it’s alright,” Maria said. “Kyle will come.”

Liz shrugged and looked around the desert. It was going to start getting hot soon.

“That’s the reservation,” she said, spying the turn-off. “We can head over there and get some water while we wait.”

“Sure,” Serena said. “Will you be okay here?” she asked Maria.

Maria waved at them while she talked to Kyle.

It didn’t take the two girls long to walk the mile or so to the gift shop. When they finally reached the store, Liz realized that it was still closed and cursed under her breath.

“How can I help you ladies?” an old woman asked, walking up behind them.

“We just wanted to get a few bottles of water,” Liz said. “Our car broke down and we were waiting for a tow truck.”

The lady nodded.

“Give me a minute to unlock and I’ll grab some water for you.”

“Thanks,” Liz said, smiling.

It didn’t take long for the woman, her long black hair hanging down her back, to return.

She handed a bottle of water to Liz and to Serena; but something stopped her when she touched Serena’s hand, her eyes wide with shock.

“I remember you,” she said, looking intently into Serena’s eyes. “You’ve changed,” the woman continued, mysteriously.

“Um,” Serena said, looking over at Liz with uncertainty.

“Don’t worry,” the woman smiled, reaching out to touch Serena’s arm. “Everything will be fine.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Serena said, looking down at the woman’s hand.

“Another water for your friend at her car.” The woman handed Liz another bottle of water and walked towards one of the trailers nearby.

“What was that about?” Liz asked Serena.

“No idea,” she said, as they started back toward the car.

Later that afternoon, Liz found herself strolling down the streets of Las Cruces eating a gelato with Serena, Maria, and Kyle, who’d reluctantly driven them to the appointment.

Though it was hot out, there were still plenty of people milling about and shopping at the outdoor mall. The buildings were all brick and decorated in a European style, with pavers lining the streets to make it feel more upscale.

Maria spent two hours in the designer’s shop and hadn’t found anything that she liked. Liz was certain that Kyle was ready to scream at his step-sister. On the one hand, Maria wanted to feel like a princess in her dress, it was her day, but at the same time none of those poofy gowns seemed to make Maria happy. Liz figured she’d go with something simple and hadn’t been able to convince Maria to like any of the slinky dresses she’d seen in the boutique.

“So, what’s the plan then?” Liz asked as they strolled down the cobbled path.

“I don’t know,” Maria said, licking up a trail of melting gelato from her cone. “Maybe I just need to buy a dress from the department store and get over it.”

“You’re kidding me, right?” Liz asked.

“Nope, maybe just a white peasant top and a skirt.”

Liz rolled her eyes at her friend’s antics. She knew Maria was tired of not finding the right dress.

Glancing around the small plaza Liz stopped dead in her tracks, swallowing a lump in her throat as she stared at the man down the path.

“Liz?” Serena asked. “You okay?”

Liz blinked and looked back to where she’d seen Michael. There was no way he was walking around this shopping village, she thought. Her mind had to be playing tricks on her.

“Liz?” Kyle said, shaking her shoulder.

Her stomach rolled.

“He’s here,” she managed to say.

“Who is?” Kyle asked.

“Michael,” she said, staring down the path that he must have taken away from the plaza.

Serena went rushing down the road while Liz tried to get a hold of herself. Tears threatened to spill over as she thought about Michael just hiding out in some city in New Mexico. Had they really gone to Antar and back? And why was he here and not at home?

Her mind raced while Kyle led her to a bench to sit down.

“Liz, I didn’t see him,” Serena said, breathlessly returning a few minutes later. “I think you might have just imagined him.”

“There’s no way,” she said, looking up at Serena. “I mean, Serena,” she said, trying to grasp what happened. “Right?”

“Oh, Liz,” she said, taking a seat next to her. “You know if he were here, that he’d have called or something.”

Liz swallowed the lump at her throat, nodding. Sure, she knew that, but why had she just seen him fifty feet away from her?


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